Friday, June 19, 2015

Dedicated To The Ones I Love...

An aircraft handler signals an F/A-18C Hornet, assigned to the Strike Fighter Squadron Two Five (VFA-25), into launch position on the flight deck aboard USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76). U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate Airman Apprentice Christopher D. Blachly
An E-2C Hawkeye assigned to the "Bluetails" of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron One Two One (VAW-121) launches from flight deck aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN-73). U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 3rd Class Christopher Stephens

Dedicated to the men and women who are out there, serving their country. Serving us.

Let's not forget those who wait for them back home. Missing them. Praying for them.

Friends and family members of the Sunliners of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 81 await the pilots' arrival during a homecoming celebration at Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana. The Sunliners returned to Oceana after a nearly 10-month deployment as part of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 aboard the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70). U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Alysia R. Hernandez

I've been on both sides of that equation.

Being out there can be tough.

Don't let anyone tell you different, waiting at home can be damn hard too!

I miss my kids...


These guys rock.

14 comments:

  1. "They also serve who only stand and wait." A quote that is often applied to describe the families of deployed military servicemen. Never had a "true" understanding of the condition until my son-in-law was deployed during Desert Storm. He was a Navy Corpsman. The year he was gone seemed endless. The best part was waiting for his flight to arrive at the Philadelphia Airport. We all stood in a hangar for half a day, watching a succession of family reunions that would melt a cynic's cold heart.

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    1. Standing on the pier in Norfolk is something I've done a couple of times.

      Seeing the ship coming in is a thrill. Seeing your kid safe and sound is beyond describing.

      And I use to wonder why my Dad would get all teary-eyed every time I left. (Note I said Dad, ex-Army, and not Mom. Mom's lose it later, in private in my experience.)

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  2. Been on both sides also and you're right, it's tough from both sides! 3 Doors Down is one of my favorite groups
    and that is one of their best songs!! Good blog.

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    1. Thanks Russ! Heard it on the radio the other day, and have listened to it a couple hundred times since. Found the video last night and while I had an idea for a different post today, went with this instead. Can't give enough props to the folks who go out of their way to entertain the troops.

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  3. Being with my daughter in law and grandkids at Ft. Carson when my son returned from Afghanistan will always be a cherished memory. Watched them march in and noticed two empty spaces in the ranks. Then two wounded soldiers were helped into those spaces. Not a dry eye in the place. Afterwards the soldiers went to the back of the building to retrieve their gear. Seeing my two oldest grandsons helping my son carry his gear to the family minivan was when I lost it for a minute.

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  4. Daughter arrives home tomorrow from UAE (Not a military trip). I'll be feeling a great deal of relief when I hear her voice on the phone.

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  5. I had 31 years in the Navy. 7 enlisted and 24 as a chaplain. When we got a call that my daughter's boyfriend had been wounded in Iraq, it was a tremendous blow. I had always been the one writing familygrams, handling Red Cross messages, and writing condolence letters for the CO to sign. Being on the other end was a shock. I can only guess how my parents were when I was in Vietnam and my wife during my deployments.

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    1. It sure makes you think.

      Thanks for stopping by Chaps.

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  6. One of the coolest things in the world is returning from deployment. The moment when the wives and kids explode from the hangar and charge out onto the flight line is remarkable.

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    1. Standing pier-side in the pouring rain in Norfolk, watching my son's ship coming in. Back from the war. The young boy you loved and raised become a man. Seeing him come home safe. No feeling like it.

      Now I've experienced two daughters coming home safe and sound as well.

      The giggly girls you raised become confident young women, with the respect of their peers.

      If you do it right, the rewards are endless.

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