As I look outside, I watch rain slice across the window pane and the wind scatter fallen leaves. On this overcast day, it seems fitting to take time to remember our veterans--those who have served, those who have changed, and those who have gone from here.
Here's my list of veterans special to me.
Members of my family:
* Walter Volkenannt - My husband, U.S. Air Force (67-71) and Vietnam Veteran (70-71).
* Walter Erik Volkenannt - My son, an Army soldier (93-96).
* James P. Duly, Sr. - My dad, an Army soldier (41-46), 96th Infantry Division, World War II disabled veteran.
* James P. Duly, Jr. - My brother, an Army soldier (70-73) and Vietnam Veteran (72).
* James Donnelly - Army soldier. A classmate from Holy Name grade school, took me to our eighth grade dance, gave me my first corsage, died in Vietnam in 1969.
* Mike Blassie - Air Force pilot. Took me to my senior prom, MIA/KIA in Vietnam in 1972, buried in the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, his remains were returned to St. Louis in 1998.
I invite you to post your memories about veterans who've touched your life, say thanks to those who have served, or remember them in your thoughts and prayers.
This is an addition to my original post
Thanks to Margo, Magdalin, Sheree, and Jodi for sending me the names of and stories about these veterans:
Margo Dill honors:
* Her husband, Rick Balinski, who was in the Air Force for six years.
* Her friend, Dan Regan, who was called to active duty during the Iraq War as a part of the National Guard.
In Margo's words, "I am thankful that we have so many people who have served our country."
Magdalin Szabo honors:
* Her younger son, Nicholas, a veteran of “Dessert Storm.”
Sheree Nielsen honors:
* Her dad, who was in WW II in the Navy as a Chief PettyOfficer on the USS Vestal that was a repair sub that was stationed in theSouth Pacific. In Sherre's words, "He served our country well."
* Her hubby was in Andrews Air Force in Washington DC area, satellitecommunications for four years, and supported people in the Pentagon.
Jodi Webb honors:
* Her father, who was a SeaBee in the Navy in the mid 50's (after Korea before Vietnam). He spent his time driving construction equipment and stringing electrical wires. And his favorite story--when he was in Morocco he drove the base band to the palace to play for the princess's 16th birthday.
To recognize the contributions of our veterans and their families, I will be giving away one copy of A Cup of Comfort for Military Families, which was released today and includes my true story, "Welcome Home. " Several of the veterans near and dear to me are mentioned in my story. To enter, send an e-mail by Thursday, Nov 13, to firstname.lastname@example.org with Welcome Home in the subject line. Include your name, e-mail and mailing address. I will announce the name of the winner on Friday, Nov 14.
To all veterans and their family members, thank you for your service and sacrifices.