Tell a Veteran Thanks

My dad (the one w/ the puppy)
proudly served in the Navy during
WWII

Happy Veteran’s Day to all those who are serving, and who have served in our military. Thank you very much for your sacrifices, and the sacrifices of your families.

I’ve mentioned before that my father served in the US Navy, and was on board a ship at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, when it was bombed on December 7, 1941.

My dad didn’t talk much about his experiences in the war. Although I wish he had, I understand why he didn’t.

I asked my niece’s son who served in Afghanistan, if he ever talked about his war experiences. No. Only with those who’d been there. I get it. How can anyone who hasn’t been there truly understand what it was like for you to go through what you went through?

There were a few things my dad did tell me.

He told me how difficult it was to watch the buddy he fought next to get killed, while Dad was physically, unscathed.

He told me how he walked into a restaurant, and someone he knew was shocked. They’d heard Dad’s ship was destroyed. It was, but Dad had been tendered to another ship, to take over for their deceased gunner, before Dad’s ship was hit.

My father told me how much it hurt to come back to the States, the country he’d proudly fought and sacrificed for, to see a sign in front of a business that said, Sailors and dogs keep off the grass.

He put his life on the line for this?Keep off the grassRight now, I’m researching the Tuskegee Airmen, and their contributions to winning the Double Victory. These men and women, like Dr. Bickham and Mr. Harold Alston, Sr. who have helped me with my research, made sacrifices to defeat Hitler overseas and Jim Crow at home.

They returned to the States to face much worse than signs telling them to keep off the grass. (Please join me in praying for Mr. Alston’s family, at his passing this week.)

And here’s where Jesus comes in. Jesus left his throne in glory to come to this earth as a man to fight for us. To win the victory over sin for us. He endured all things we as humans endure to pay the price for our freedom from Satan’s claws of death.

Jesus knew the joys. The pains. The prejudices. The humiliation. The betrayal. The love. The loss.

pathwayWhile I can sympathize and get upset about the unfair treatment others face, unless I’ve walked a mile in their moccasins, I cannot truly comprehend the raw emotions and pain events in their lives cause.

But Jesus can.

He won the victory. He is the conqueror. His death and resurrection bought our freedom. Praise God.

It’s obvious, of course, that he (Jesus) didn’t go to all this trouble for angels. It was for people like us, children of Abraham. That’s why he had to enter into every detail of human life. Then, when he came before God as high priest to get rid of the people’s sins, he would have already experienced it all himself—all the pain, all the testing—and would be able to help where help was needed. Hebrew 2:16-18 (MSG)

 

scarvesKnow a veteran? Tell them thanks. Even better, join Sissy and me, as we create knitted Knit Your Bit Scarvesand crocheted scarves to donate to VA Centers across the US. Here is a link for info on the National WWII Museum’s Knit Your Bit campaign.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Veteran’s Day

November 11 is Veteran’s Day.

In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations …”

An Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U. S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday—a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.”

My dad (the one w/ the puppy)
proudly served in the Navy during
WWII

Armistice Day was primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I, but in 1954, after World War II required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, Marines and airmen in the Nation’s history; after American forces fought aggression in Korea, the 83rd Congress, at the urging of the veterans service organizations, amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting in its place the word “Veterans.”

With the approval of this legislation  on June 1, 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

My brother during basic training, Viet Nam era.

To all the many men and women who are serving, and who have served, in ourarmed forces throughout the history of the United States of America, thank you so very much.

Your dedication, sacrifice, and honor, and that of your families, are greatly appreciated.

I, indeed, salute you.

I wish you well,

Sandy

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Endeavour Flyover

Endeavour lifts off from Launch Pad 39A

Courtesy NASA photo

You know those times when a flood of emotions crash down on you all at once? Pride. Sadness. Happiness. Deflation. You feel like cheering the victories, but have tears for the loss.

Bittersweet, some call it.

Well, Thursday, September 20, 2012, was one of those days for me.

Space Shuttle Endeavour, riding atop NASA’s 747 Shuttle Carrier Aircraft, flew over our house, a little after 7 AM.  It had taken off at sunrise from Ellington Field while Pilot and I packed the car for our trip to Dallas/Ft. Worth, for the American Christian Fiction Writers conference. When we heard the incredible deep-throated rumble of the aircraft, we looked up.

The SCA and Endeavour fly over Houston

Endeavour over Houston, TX
Courtesy NASA photos

As the 747 took one last flyover Johnson Space Center, it hooked a left, and flew directly over our house. Then headed west, to Los Angeles, where it will be on permanent display.

I’m not going to get into the politics of shutting down the shuttle program, or the issue of not awarding Houston with a retired shuttle. That’s for others to debate.

I will say this, however, I am extremely proud of all the hard work countless people in our country did to keep that shuttle flying from its conception, to retirement. I am also extremely proud of all the countless people who keep the International Space Station in the air. Plus, those who are working toward building our next space vehicle.

Our son, Pie, is a third-generation space worker. Pilot worked with the shuttle program at Kennedy

Pilot in Mission Control Center Houston

Space Center in Florida, and as a Mission Control Specialist for the ISS at Johnson Space Center. Pilot’s father worked in the launch control center during the Apollo missions.

Proud heritage.

Mixed emotions.

Sad day.

On Sept. 12, 1962, President John F. Kennedy announced, from Rice University in Houston, that the United States would land men on the moon. “We choose to go to the moon… and do other things, not because they are easy.  But because they are hard.”

I wish you well.

Sandy

PS

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