Wednesday, September 30, 2009

His Star Has Turned From Blue to Gold

Spc. Kevin J. Graham

Monday, Gov. Steve Beshear recognized the sacrifice of a Kentucky native solider who died while supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

According to the Department of Defense, Spc. Kevin J. Graham, 27, of Benton, Ky. died September 26 in Kandahar, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his vehicle with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 17th Infantry Regiment, 5th Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, Fort Lewis, Wash.

Spc. Graham became the 16th casualty of his team since it was deployed to Afghanistan in July. His awards and decorations include the National Defense Service Medal and the Army Service Ribbon. He entered active duty July 26, 2007. This was his first deployment.

Gov. Beshear will order that flags at all state office buildings be lowered to half-staff from sunrise to sunset on the day of Spc. Graham’s interment for which arrangements are still pending.
May Almighty God Bless this hero and comfort the family who loves him so.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Talking Tuesday

Gates Rebuffs Calls for Afghan Timeline (click to read entire article, then come right back!)

Is an Afghan timeline a good idea?

Your turn..........

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Women + Subs = $$$

There have been several articles over the past few days regarding women serving on Submarines. Below, I have attached an article which was posted on Stars and Stripes.

If you have ever served on a 'boat' or even had the opportunity to tour know first hand they give all new meaning to "Close Quarters" I had the honor of touring the USS Miami a couple years ago. Hubster was working in New London, I tagged along (I do love the New England area). The Miami was docked in port, between underway periods. It was fascinating to say the least, how so much machinery can fit into a vessel. The galley has a huge freezer and ample table seating, as long as you don't mind your buddy's elbow in your gut. The berthing area has bunk beds which don't have Serta mattresses, but I have no doubt these sailors have no problem sleeping at the end of their shift. On board were only the necessary personnel, while the submarine lay still at sea level. I am one with a huge 'hula-hoop' zone, meaning I NEED my personal space. Submarine life would not be a good career choice for me, but Hubster made the choice and it worked well for him!

Privacy is a non event when living on a Submarine. The mission is to be done and all on board are there for that purpose only. Long shifts and infrequent personal time is simply the way it is. Submarines were designed with confined personal space, not enough bunks for the entire crew (many must 'hot-rack' also known as sharing a bunk). The latrines have limited space as well. In order to accommodate male and females living in such tight quarters, many expensive alterations are needed. For some classes of Submarines an entire new design would be necessary, for others it would be simpler to make the changes. Either way, a lot of money is needed!

What about women only boats? Are there enough female sailors to accommodate full coverage and adequately man the submarine?

We are all feeling the pinch of tough economic times. There is much talk of cutting back on military resources. Is this the manner we want our military spending utilized? What is the true number of females demanding to serve on submarines or is this simply a 'feel good' maneuver?

Is it really worth it???

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Navy ‘moving aggressively’ to allow women on subs

Leo Shane III, Stars and StripesMideast edition, Saturday, September 26, 2009

WASHINGTON — The secretary of the Navy said the service is “moving aggressively” to allow female sailors aboard submarines, a move that would open another of the few remaining career paths currently closed to women in the military.
In a statement released Thursday, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus said he and other top officials have been working on the change since he was sworn in last March.
“I believe women should have every opportunity to serve at sea, and that includes aboard submarines,” he wrote.
Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead, in his own statement earlier this week, noted there are “particular issues with integrating women into the submarine force” but added he believes they can be resolved.
In 1993, Congress struck down exclusion policies which barred women from serving in certain combat positions. Shortly thereafter, the Navy began allowing women to serve on some ships, but still bars females from serving aboard submarines.
Critics have long argued that forcing men and women to serve together in a submarine’s close quarters could lead to harassment, and the subs would have to be retrofitted with separate bathing and sleeping quarters.
But Roughead dismissed those claims, saying the move is an important step towards diversifying the fleet.
“Having commanded a mixed gender surface combatant, I am very comfortable addressing integrating women into the submarine force,” he wrote.
Last week, in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Joint Chiefs Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen said he believes the military should “continue to broaden opportunities for women” and specifically cited the ban on women serving on-board submarines as a policy he’d like to see overturned.
On Friday, Nancy Duff Campbell, co-president of the National Women’s Law Center, lauded the Navy for promising the change.
“This is a heartening first step toward opening all positions in the Armed Services to women, who have proven their value and valor under fire in operations in Iraq and Afghanistan,” she said.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Thursday Thoughts...

My blog has been somewhat ignored recently, but for very good reason.

Her name is "Belle".

My daughter gave birth to her third daughter on September 16th. I've been helping out as much as needed, and loving each moment! Belle entered the world weighing 6 pounds, 9 ounces and she is 19.5 inches long. Her two older sisters, Precious and Bright-Eyed-Beauty are THE best big sisters in all the world! The littlest one, is such a sweet baby. God is good!
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Our little Angel is beginning to crawl! She is already 7 months old...time travels far too quickly. We had a blast last weekend, with all four grandgirls together! Angel, her mom and I went to the Poolesville Day celebration. The town's main road is closed down the entire day for the festival. The music was great and we can't wait to take Angel next year, when she will be able to enjoy the ponies! Oh, did I mention the super yummy Crabcake sandwich for lunch???
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AirmanMom celebrated another birthday earlier this week. You know you are old, when your own mother can't believe how old you are! Geez! I spoke with my GodMother on my birthday and she kept asking if I was certain that I was that old. It was an awesome day, a scrumptious dinner prepared by Hubster with Cold Stone cupcakes for dessert. I spoke with all four of my children and the two biggest grandgirls sang Happy Birthday to me. At work, one of the guys brought in a Tres Leches cake from a wonderful bakery...and it was his day off! One of the ladies even baked cookies and she loves the kitchen about as much as I do!!! I am so blessed to have so many kind people in my life, I am so very grateful for every one of them!
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So far the month of September has seen the loss of over 30 soldiers. Since October 7, 2001 over 4,700 soldiers have paid the ultimate price in Iraq and Afghanistan. We must never forget that each and every one of these Airman, Soldiers, Sailors and Marines have families at home with a hole in their heart. We must never forget these service members...never!
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Last week I was told by my oldest son, that he has volunteered to deploy to Afghanistan early next year. Gulp. My youngest son informed me a couple weeks ago, that he is waiting for a Quick Deployment order. The opportunity arose at the beginning of the month, another Airman took the order... Gulp. Heavy Duty KneePads will be needed, if both my sons are deployed at the same time!!! I'll be looking for some prayer warriors!!!
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Autumn has officially arrived!!! It is my favorite time of year. The cooler temps are perfect for working outside all day and sleeping at night. Nothing quite like crispness in the air. Nothing quite like watching children run through a pumpkin patch or the aroma of warm apple cider. Nothing quite like the leaves taking on so many vibrant colors. Hubster and I went to the Shenandoah Hot Air Balloon Festival last fall and we plan to go again this year. Spectacular colors! How Great God is, to give us so many wonderful gifts...stimulating all our senses!
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My Blog should resume to 'normal' one day soon. I'll try desperately to catch up on my blog reading as well.
May Almighty God Bless each and every Airman, Soldier, Sailor and Marine!!!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Their Stars Have Turned From Blue to Gold

Spc. Damon G. Winkleman

Born: February 26, 1986 in Wooster, Ohio
Died September 20, 2009 in Zabul province, Afghanistan

Spc. Damon G. Winkleman of Lakeville, Ohio was a 2004 graduate of Loudonville High School where he played football for the Redbirds. He was an upbeat and hard worker at practice contributing all he could to the success of the team. He was also a good student, taking on challenging courses and doing well. He was focused and worked on hard on a purpose in life. He had a great disposition that endeared him to both his peers and his teachers. After graduating he attended Monroe Military Institute in Monroe, Alabama earning a degree in applied science in 2006. It was during this time that he enlisted in the Army, ultimately becoming an Army medic. Damon is the youngest of three sons of Richard “Wink” and Pat Winkleman. All four boys and their father ave served in the military. Damon’s father is a United States Army Reserve major and his brothers Jason and Nathan have also served in the Army. In had been ten years since all the family had been together during a holiday, but on Thanksgiving 2008 all four servicemen had much to be grateful for when they were all able to be home. Their local paper even featured a story about the rare holiday reunion. His awards and decorations include the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Afghan Campaign Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, and the Parachutists Badge. Damon died at age 21 in Zabul province, Afghanistan, of injuries sustained during a vehicle rollover. Also killed was Spc. Corey J. Kowall of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

2nd Battalion
508th Parachute Infantry Regiment
4th Brigade Combat Team
82nd Airborne Division
Fort Bragg, North Carolina

Sgt. David A. Davis

A 28-year-old Army sergeant based at Fort Carson was killed in an attack on Bagram Airfield. Sgt. David A. Davis of Dalhart, Texas, died Sept. 19. said Davis was killed by “indirect fire.” That means the attackers launched an assault without seeing the target.

Davis was assigned to the 32nd Transportation Company, 68th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 43rd Sustainment Brigade, 4th Infantry Division.

He was on his third deployment, twice fighting in Iraq, and had received numerous medals for his service. News releases did not say whether he was married.

Army Spc. Corey Kowall

Army Spc. Corey Kowall, 20, of Murfreesboro, has died in a vehicle crash in Afghanistan.

He graduated from Siegel High School in 2007. His grandfather served in the Navy, his great-grandfather served in World War II, and his great-great-grandfather was in World War I. Corey was active in the Murfreesboro Composite Squadron of the Civil Air Patrol and the Raider program, a physical fitness team that competes against other high school JROTC programs.

He enlisted in the Army right after graduating and was in the Alpha Company, Second Battalion, 508th parachute infantry regiment in the fourth brigade combat team of the 82nd Airborne division of the U.S. Army, based at Fort Bragg, NC.

Kowall joined the Army in June 2007. "Spc. Kowall was an extremely competent soldier and an extraordinary individual. His death leaves a tear in our formation and in our hearts," said Kowall's company commander, Capt. Paul W. Pena, in a statement. "Though sorely missed, Corey will continue to be a source of inspiration and strength throughout Alpha Company."

Kowall's awards and decorations include the Army Achievement Medal, the Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, the Afghan Campaign Medal, the Army Service Ribbon, the Expert Infantry Badge and the Parachutists Badge.The unit deployed to Afghanistan in July 2009. Corey was responding to a call to assist a convoy that had encountered an IED (improvised explosive device), when his vehicle overturned and he was killed in the accident.

Among Corey's family are his father, C.J. Kowall and his two sisters.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Guest Blogger-Bill McMillan

Please take a few moments and read the words of Bill McMillan and his wife, Kim.
Two everyday people, doing extraordinary deeds!

We began working on the Welcome Home Project, a retreat and public welcome home ceremony and performance for vets from Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam in late 2007. (see: My wife, Kim, and I are both civilians but felt a deep sense of frustration at the disconnect that seems to exist between us and returning vets, their stories, their difficulties and triumphs, and the reality of what it takes for veterans and their families upon the return. There are plenty of news stories and in general the reception by our society is much improved over what the Vietnam Vets had to deal with, but something felt out of whack because there was no personal connection and there was, and is, still a lot of political noise that gets in the way of the human part of this. So we chose to get involved. It wasn't hard to do and the enthusiastic response by friends and strangers who heard about what we were doing showed us that a huge percentage of the population out there wants to feel connected and to be a part of this, the aftermath of war, as well. They just didn't know how to go about it. When we created a way, they jumped on and hundreds of civilians in this community were deeply affected by the poetry and stories told by the veterans at the gathering on Memorial Day. The documentary we are working to edit is about healing and PTSD. But healing looks different than "curing" when talking about war and Post Traumatic Stress. While the pain of the veterans and their families is obvious when talking about war, the problem for us civilians is much more subtle. The emotional distance most of us civilians feel about what is being done in our names, right or wrong, is debilitating to all of us and also perpetuates a cold distance between us and the men and women who served, as well as their families. This is incredibly sad and it also perpetuates the distance and isolation many vets feel upon returning. All of us need to share in this, not as a punishment but as a willing acceptance of the truths that come home to us. And, as this documentary will show, all of us will benefit from this reconnection to our veteran brothers and sisters. There is huge wisdom in these men and women, all of them transformed by their experiences, now ready to offer an understanding of the delicate reality of life and death, the depth of connection possible between us, and the need for all of us to look past politics and to see each other simply as human beings. That will begin to heal the whole society. We just need help to spread the word, so please check out the website and pass the word!


Bill McMillan
The Welcome Home Project
Ashland, Or

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Give Them Courage, Give Them Strength!

My Prayer

Lord, This is my prayer
Let them know that we care
Bring them back safe and sound
As they are all freedom bound
Watch over them day and night
Watch over them as they fight
Give them courage
Give them Strength
As they go to great length
A thanks to them all
Help the families of the ones that fall
Again I say As I pray Lord,
this is my prayer
Let them know that we care

Friday, September 18, 2009

Welcome to the World, Little One...

She is the Belle of my heart...
Love you so!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wednesday Hero 09/16/2009

This Week's Post Is Via Gazing At The Flag

PFC Thomas Lowell Tucker
PFC Thomas Lowell Tucker
24 years old from Madras, Oregon
B Company, 1st Battalion, 502nd Infantry Regiment, 2nd Brigade, 101st Airborne Division
June 16, 2006
U.S. Army

Flag Gazer has a great post up on the dedication of the PFC Thomas Tucker memorial.

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Talking Tuesday

Sunday morning, the Washington Post had a photo on the front page with the headline, "Lashing Out at the Capitol". The photo (which I have chosen not to post) shows tens of thousands of protesters with an upside down American Flag.

As I understand it, a flag hanging upside down is a symbol of our Nation in Distress. For generations, soldiers have fought to protect our freedoms... yes, I know it is considered a freedom to hang our Flag in the manner.

Flying the American flag upside down is traditionally considered a sign of distress, as it is with all national flags. The signal is one that was used primarily in past centuries (pre-1900s), on the high seas by military and merchant marine vessels alike. While the U.S. Flag Code does permit flying the flag with the union down, it specifies only " a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property."

Our Flag represents all who have shed blood to protect Her.

Where is the line between freedom of speech and disrespect?

Your turn.........

Monday, September 14, 2009

MudPuppy News!!!

MudPuppy is home with his family and friends! In his words, he is "happy as a clam". Hooray!

So what has our hero been up to?

Good stuff!!!!!

MudPuppy is featured in an article in the New York Times! You can read it HERE! He will spend the next couple weeks 'scrubbing' his blog, and it will become public once again. As soon as "Embrace the Suck" is open for all to read, I will attach the link. (put your mouse away, rolling all over this post will not get you to MudPuppy yet!)

Please join me in continued prayer for my SoldierSon, as he transitions into our 'world'.

May Almighty God watch over and protect each and every Airman, Soldier, Sailor and Marine.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow...

A U.S. soldier reacts during a ceremony to mark the anniversary of Sept. 11 2001, at the main U.S. base, in Bagram, north of Kabul, Afghanistan, Friday, Sept. 11, 2009. (AP / Musadeq Sadeq)

Today is the 13th of September.

Yet another anniversary of September 11th has come and gone.

Our soldiers are still fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Our soldiers are still dying.

Today is the the 13th of September.

We must never forget.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Latin Lesson

A very long time ago, I took a Latin class. My goal at that point in life, was to become a Psychologist. (afterall, all doctors need a little bit of Latin.) God gave me four children; my dream of helping others became a a slightly different form.

I happened upon this Latin quote and decided to post in honor of all our brave soldiers as they return home from faraway lands.

Deus festinus... You've done your time in Hell.

Friday, September 11, 2009

September 11th

September 11th will live in every American’s heart. A beautiful, sunny autumn morning; which turned into one of the darkest days our nation will ever know. Our safe nest is now a memory.

On September 11, 2001 I was in Dallas on a business trip. I remember watching the Today show in the hotel room, as I got ready for a day packed full of meetings. The shock of watching a plane go into the tower was surreal. I scurried to the breakfast area and joined a crowd watching as the next plane slammed into the other tower. Among total strangers, I watched horrific history being made. We sobbed.
Throughout the day, CNN was kept on at the office. I knew my first phone call had to be to my 19 year old son, who had just enlisted in the United States Air Force two years earlier. Mom Tears rolled as my son told me he was packed and ready to go.

Gulp. Pride. Gulp.

Around 11am on September 13th, the U.S. Department of Transportation allowed national airspace to reopen. I was at the gate, waiting to board a plane back to DC. Two Middle-Eastern men sat down at the gate. One by one, passengers went to the desk, whispering to the attendants. I sat with a co-worker and we spoke quietly that all we wanted was to go home. We boarded the plane. The two Middle-Eastern men boarded the plane. I heard crying in the seats around me. At least 60% of the passengers removed their carry-on bags and exited the plane. Security boarded and showed the two men off the plane. From my window seat, I watched every piece of luggage unloaded and taken back into the airport for security. Moments later, police entered the plane with dogs and we were told to remain seated (at this point the plane was about empty). Luggage was reloaded, the police and their dogs exited. The pilot came over the intercom and announced he made the decision to have the two men escorted off the plane and if anyone is uncomfortable with this choice, they could speak with him personally. He asked that we buckle our seatbelts and let’s go home. I called my mom to let her know I was on one of the first planes taking off out of DFW and most definitely the safest plane leaving the airport.

Flying has never been the same since that day.

The word, FEAR has all new meaning.

Terror was something we used to watch in a movie.

Too many Americans were killed on 9/11. We must never forget.

Too many American soldiers have lost their life in this war. We must never forget.

Our children will never know the world as a safe place, as we did as children. We must never forget.

As a nation we must lift our prayers for all who have lost loved ones in the Towers, at the Pentagon, on the Pennsylvania field, along with our Service Members both the fallen heroes and the loved ones far away from home fighting this war.

We Must Never Forget.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Happy Birthday, S-I-L!

How do you say thank you to someone who has filled your heart with joy?

How do you say thank you to someone who loves your daughter unconditionally?

How do you say thank you to someone who has fathered three of your grandgirls?

How do you say thank you to someone who is an outstanding role model to young minds?

How do you say thank you to someone who loves Orioles baseball?

Well, let's try this...

God blessed me with two sons, I carried under my heart. My daughter met an amazing man; a man who has loved, supported and tried his best to understand my daughter. A man who gave me a glass of water when I was thirsty. A man who wrote love messages in primer on the nursery walls of his first daughter (my first grandgirl) with me! (yes, we covered them with paint). A man who actually entertained the idea of writing Led Zeppelin lyrics as a border for above mentioned nursery (There's a Lady Who's Sure, All That Glitters is Gold, and She's Buying a Stairway to Heaven). Have I mentioned their first dance at their wedding was "Thank You" by Led Zeppelin? Are you feeling the love for my S-I-L???

I remember their wedding day well...I gave my daughter away to this man. Just moments before placing my daughter's hand in his...I whispered in his ear. I hope he forever knows I gave him one of my most precious gifts in this world. I gave him my love, to care for, to respect, to share the rest of their days....
He has lived his promise, and I thank him.

God's plan was that I bring my two sons into this world. It was also God's plan that my daughters marry, so that I could love two more sons.

Kick back and enjoy a little bit of Led Zeppelin...the first dance of my daughter and my S-I-L. May I add, I was one of the few who truly appreciated the beauty of this song as their first wedding dance?

Happy Birthday,J...I thank you!
p.s. Momma loves you!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009


A five minute reminder of a September day, only eight years ago....

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Talking Tuesday

To see, or not to see?

Was AP right or wrong to publish the picture of the dying Marine, Lance Cpl. Joshua Bernard?

Should the family objections overrule, or is freedom of speech foremost?

What now? Does AP deserve a slap on the wrist, a lawsuit or is this indeed simply another cost of being at war?

Your turn............................

Monday, September 7, 2009

Labor Day, 2009

Labor Day falls on the the first Monday in September. It is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Thank you to all who work so hard, to make our nation the finest and strongest in all the world.

May your Labor Day be filled with gratitude and BBQ's.

.........I'm off to work.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A Blogger's Star Has Turned From Blue to Gold

Our nation now has one more fallen soldier, Spc. Jordan Shay. The Blogging world has lost a young voice. Please read his words HERE.

May Almighty God Bless this brave soldier and comfort the family who loves him so.

North Shore soldier dies in vehicle rollover in Iraq

NEWBURYPORT -- Dawn Palmer couldn't help but smile when talking about her nephew, Jordan Shay, and couldn't help but speak with sadness when she talked about his death in Iraq earlier this week.

"It sickened me,'' Palmer said today about the loss of her 22-year-old nephew who was serving with the US Army. "He was a ray of sunshine.''

The Defense Department announced today that Shay and another soldier were killed in a vehicle rollover in Baqubah, Iraq on Thursday. The soldiers were assigned to the 5th Battalion, 20th Infantry Regiment, 3rd Stryker Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division, out of Fort Lewis, Wash. The department said the incident is under investigation.

Shay left in August tor Iraq, his second tour of duty there since enlisting in 2006, his family said.

Shay grew up on Old County Road in Amesbury, was a 2005 graduate of Amesbury High School, and was planning to ask his long-time girlfriend, identified by Palmer only by her first name of Kelsey, to marry him when he returned stateside.

His father, Michael, died of cancer when he was two years old and he was raised by his mother, Holly Shay, who was too brokenhearted to speak with reporters today, said Palmer.

“My sister, Holly, will never be a grandmother. She will not know her daughter-in-law,’’ said Palmer, standing outside her sister's home here. “There is deep sadness. That’s a deep loss."

In Amesbury, neighbors recalled Shay with great affection and smiles. Neighbor John Edmands said he was surprised by Shay's decision to enlist because he didn't seem to be of a military bent. In fact, Shay was a vegan when he enlisted and to prepare himself for the Army he went to get a steak, cheese, and onion sub so that he could get used to eating meat, Edmands recalled.

"He wanted to do something for his country, and he decided that's what he wanted to do," Edmands said.

Another neighbor who considered Shay part of his family expressed sadness at his death. "I think he did it for the excitement, the thrill -- and the challenge," said Kenny Fitzpatrick. "It's a damned shame.''

Shay was especially close to the Wilkin family, who lived next door on Old County Road. Vicki Wilkin, 25, recalled today that Shay was a bulwark for her family several years ago when her oldest sister died in a freak car crash. Shay was a pallbearer then, but most importantly helped with the grieving.

“He will be missed very, very much,’’ Vicki Wilkin said.

She described her younger brother, Greg, as Shay’s best friend, someone who had been texting him during his Iraq deployment just last week. Greg Wilkin could not be reached for comment today.

Vicki Wilkin said that she learned about Shay’s death from her relatives and remains shocked by the news. “It was so surreal. It still is to me,’’ she said. “I feel like he is going to call Greg and laugh and say it is all a big joke.’’

Shay is the second man from Amesbury to die while serving his country in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. On Sept. 1, 2005, Army Lieutenant Derek Hines was killed in Afghanistan. Hines grew up in Amesbury and Newburyport.

Friends said Shay did not know Hines.

Palmer said Shay's mother was reluctant to see her son join the Army at a time when the nation is at war, but once he had made up his mind, his mother supported his choices.

“Jordan was the most wonderful kid I have ever met. He was kind, he was considerate, he was thoughtful, He was full of adventure,’ Palmer said. “He is greatly missed, but we are also proud of him. We are also proud of the choice he’s made. He died for a very good reason. He died for his country. He loved his country.’’

She added, "now I know the sacrifice and the suffering and the loss that goes along with dying for your country -- and I am still proud of Jordan.''

Funeral arrangements were incomplete today.

September 4, 2009 05:57 PM
By John R. Ellement, Globe Staff

Friday, September 4, 2009

September Stuff

September is one of those month; there simply are not enough hours in the day, enough days in the week or enough weeks in the month.

I. Love. September.

I love the days getting shorter, the nights getting cooler, the smell of logs burning in a fireplace. I love to see all the pretty faces of Pansies, the touch of a straw bale, and the oddity of corn stalks. I love that IHOP offers Pumpkin Pancakes and oh how I love to use my crockpot!

I. Love. September.

My birthday is in September... my mom always called me her 'last rose of summer'. God will bless our family with a baby girl this month. It is the month to celebrate the birth of one of my son-in-laws, my aunt, a good friend I have know since I was 17 years old and another friend I have known for almost 20 years!

September 11th is the tragic reminder of what terrorism is all about. We have been blessed to not know such a horrific event since 9/11, I pray our nation never relives that nightmare. If you don't own a flag, please buy one and proudly show our colors. I'll be posting much more about 9/11, as we approach the anniversary of atrocious attacks.

September is also Suicide Prevention Month. World Suicide Prevention Day is September 10th. Every year approximately one million people die by suicide-one death every two minutes. focuses on suicide prevention in the military. AFSP (American Foundation for Suicide Prevention) hosts an "Out of the Darkness Walk" around the nation. I'm hoping to participate in the Frederick, Maryland walk on November 7th.

September is a month of change; not only the change of season, but the beginning of a new school year. September 2007 was the first time in 24 years I did not have a child to get prepared for school. Just think, I may never have to buy another box of colored pencils or another composition book! Sweet!
For those of you interested...September's birthstone is Sapphire and the flower is Forget-Me-Not. (wink-wink)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Thursday Thought

Pallets of cargo drop from a C-17 Globemaster III to a forward operating base in Afghanistan, Aug. 27, 2009, in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. The aircraft is assigned to the 817th Expeditionary Airlift Squadron.
(U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Michael B. Keller)

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As we walk through the aisles of our local grocery store and favorite bakery...let's not forget how our soldiers receive their food and water.

May Almighty God Bless each and every Airman, Soldier, Sailor and Marine!

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Wednesday Hero 09/02/2009

Today marks the third anniversary of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. Not the actual Wednesday Hero posts. Those posts were started in 2005. This marks the third year of when these posts went public for anyone to post them. And it's taken off like gangbusters. People have signed up and wanted to take part in honoring those who do what they do in the name of freedom. At one point reaching over 100 participating sites. Thank you all who have signed up and those of you who read and comment on these posts. These people, whether they're actually in the military or are just doing something to aid those in the military, deserve to be remembered.

Christopher Lee
Right-Wing & Rightminded

These brave men and women sacrifice so much in their lives so that others may enjoy the freedoms we get to enjoy everyday. For that, I am proud to call them Hero.
We Should Not Only Mourn These Men And Women Who Died, We Should Also Thank God That Such People Lived

This post is part of the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. For more information about Wednesday Hero, or if you would like to post it on your site, you can go here.
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A very warm and special thank you to Chris for his dedication to our military! A great project for all of us who support our troops! Congrats, Chris!!!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Talking Tuesday

Happy September!

Autumn is coming!!! My favorite time of year. Those 'THEY' people who say so much about everything; have stated those who are born during the Fall Season, enjoy that season most. Interesting. I have yet to Snopes or Google this tidbit of information, but I'll believe it...why not?

Honestly, I have no idea where July and August went! These past two months have simply evaporated. September will be yet another busy month. Between the upcoming arrival of my newest grandgirl, several birthdays to celebrate and work getting busy... It would be nice for time to slow down, just for a little while.

Which brings us to our Talking Tuesday.....

Back in the early 80's, the J. Geils Band sang a song, 'Freeze Frame'. By no means was it the greatest song ever written..but when I think of a moment stopping in time, a snapshot of a moment...this song gets stuck in my head. Like last Autumn when Hubster and I took a Foliage train ride through the mountains of Western Maryland and another Freeze Frame of enjoying the Shenandoah Valley Hot Air Balloon, Wine and Music Festival .(definitely going back this year)

What's your finest September 'Freeze Frame' moment?

Your turn...............................

(On a side note, I apologize for any inconvenience or loss of mind which may have resulted from my invisible post yesterday. I chose to revise, after posting. Perhaps on a new day, I will pull together those deleted thoughts and write a fresh post)

(On a second side note, I chose this topic due to the sad news of the record number of Fallen Soldiers in the month of August. I have a feeling, September may well surpass July and August. Knowing I must publish upcoming "Blue to Gold" posts, I felt the need to begin the month in a light-hearted fashion)