Monday, April 30, 2007

Woo Hoo! Yesterday at the 2007 Face of America Bike Ride was a blast!!

My daughter and I traveled up to Chevy Chase,MD yesterday to assist with handing out lunches when the 2007 Face of America Bike Ride

(sponsored by World T.E.A.M. Sports .....and T.E.A.M stands for "The Exceptional Athlete Matters",I found out yesterday:)

came to the Geico building parking lot as their last stop before heading to the

National Naval Medical Center .

As it turned out, the 'lunch stop' got turned into just a 'water stop' because the bike ride was running behind schedule.

But we still got to meet some Great folks.....both fellow Soldiers Angels members , and some of the bike riders (Hey,Josh!!!!),and friends and family of the bike riders, and volunteers from other organizations. (And the "Geico Gecko" was there:)

It was an absolutely Gorgeous day....the sun was shining,clear blue skies, not too warm out. April and I arrived at 10 am, and then learned that the riders were about 2 hours delayed. We teamed up with some other kindred spirits (i.e. "hungry people",lol) and walked a block to get some food for ourselves at a restaurant in the Metro station mall....and act silly while we were there,LOL.(no,Security wasn't called, but we got some funny looks:)

The 'Lunch Truck" arrived, and we helped set up tables and then learned that we Weren't going to be a lunch stop, and took the tables back down.

When the riders came in, the "Geico Gecko" met them as they entered the parking lot,high-fiving a bunch of the riders, and they rode down the entrance to the parking lot and then circled around to pass through a tree-filled lane hung with banners made by schoolchildren and other veteran/troop supporters that were flapping in the breeze....while we Angels, and family members and friends of the riders, clapped and cheered.

I think the water stop lasted about 20 minutes.....we were handing outwater,chips,pretzels, and oranges to the riders, and then they all grouped together to ride the final 3 miles to the National Naval Medical Center,where the ride ended.  We volunteers didn't get to see the end of the ride, we did 'clean up' duty, but we did get to go down to the Medical Center afterwards,where the riders Finally were eating their lunches and just hanging out and celebrating the end of their long 2 day bike ride that started in Gettysburg,PA.

There was a fellow Soldiers Angel member who was taking pictures, and she already has some up on her website  Click here: SmugMug - PuppyLovePhotography's photo galleries (It's under "freedom race" )

or the direct link is here  Click here: SmugMug - PuppyLovePhotography : freedom race

I'll get my own pictures developed and posted within the next few days (darn, I wish I had a digital camera,lol) and pass along any other pics as I come across them.

This was a wonderful event to be a part of, and it was worth every bit of the 4 hour round trip for us, to meet some other Angels and all the other great folks we got to meet. (And hey! we got free shirts from World T.E.A.M. Sports.....doesn't everyone drive 4 hours roundtrip, just to get a free shirt?) 'dork moment' that I have to share is, while we were driving to the Geico building, we passed a church with cars parked all up and down the road next to it, and I commented to my daughter "There must be a wedding, or a funeral, or something". She looked at me in amazement,and just said "OR, it could be because it's SUNDAY, Mom!!!"And then I replied,"oh my gosh, it IS Sunday,isn't it?"(All I can say in my defense is we got up Very Early to make the drive....maybe I hadn't had enough coffee yet?:)

My next big event that I'm looking forward to is the 2007 Milblog Conference .


Oh, and speaking of bike rides? Remember the local teacher that I blogged about last fall who made a bike ride with firefighters?  Click here: Mrs. Ferek’s Blog

I saw last week in our local paper that she had won an award. 

Daily News-Record (Harrisonburg, VA){PUBLICATION2}

April 25, 2007
Section: Valley Virginia

Bridgewater College Honors Alumni
Valley Residents Cited For Professional, Community Leadership

   ALICIA WOTRING, Daily News-Record

Bridgewater College honored six alumni last week, including two Valley residents, for their professional and community leadership. Paige Will of Dayton received the West-Whitelow Award, which honors humanitarian service, and Cindy Pearson Ferek of Broadway received the 2007 Young Alumnus Award.

Ferek is a teacher and coach at Turner Ashby High School.

She led a cross-country bike trip from San Francisco to the Pentagon to raise awareness for Sept. 11 victims and the Christian Firefighters Association, the press release said.

She is a supporter of the Special Olympics and served as a Big Sister for Big Brothers Big Sisters for six years.

She teaches health, physical education and driver's education. She has also coached girls tennis and basketball.


Congratulations! Mrs. Ferek :)

Well, that's all for today:) Hope everyone has a great week!


Friday, April 27, 2007

Soldiers Angels around the web, and the 2007 Face of America Bike Ride

Whew, what a week this has been!  I had an abcessed tooth, and had to get it removed. Monday, my boyfriend had an accident where he cut one of his fingers all the way to the bone. Yuck. (It got stitched up and he's in the process of healing now:)

I am looking forward to this weekend, and the  2007 Face of America Bike Ride

Soldiers Angels is hosting a luncheon along the route, and we'll be there to help out with that. (Yes, I will take pictures!!:)

This is going to be a Very quick post, as I have to get ready for work shortly, but here's a look at news about,and by, Soldiers Angels around the web.

Click here: Soldiers Angels Network: $10,000.00 to Virginia Tech ROTC Cadet Endowment Fund

Click here: Soldiers Angels Network: Soldier visits pen pal class : News : KHQA7

Billy at  Hunts for Heroes  has some news up at his forums 
And an online friend and Marine wife, who blogs at  Deployment #7 in sight...   made me aware of this site
which was started by this man  Mark Dakota  , after he was inspired to write a song called "Soldier".
That's about it for today, except that my boss,Becky, is getting married today, so I wanted to say
Wishing everyone a great weekend, and
God Bless Our Troops, and God Bless Their Families.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


(The post below is brought to you by the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. There is more about the blogroll at the end of the post.)

This Weeks Soldier Was Suggested By Sunny Kay

Col. Cyril Richard "Rick" Rescorla 68 years old from New York City, New York 16th Air Assault Brigade, Parachute Regiment (England) Platoon Leader of 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile) (U.S.)
September 11, 2001
Col. Rick Rescorla is a multiple time hero. In 1957 he enlisted in the British Army and began training as a paratrooper with The Parachute Regiment of the 16th Air Assault Brigade. He went on to serve with an intelligence unit in Cyprus, a paramilitary police inspector in the Northern Rhodesia Police (now the Zambia Police Service).
When his military career ended in England he joined the Metropolitan Police Service in London. But he found the paperwork too boring and quite at the behest of a friend who encouraged him to join the United State Army. Which he did.
In 1963, Rescorla enlisted, with his friend, in the United States Army. After he completed basic training he attended officer training school and was assigned as a platoon leader in the 2nd Battalion, 7th Cavalry Regiment, 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile).
 He was shipped to Vietnam and participated in the Battle of la Drang. While in Vietnam, he was given the nickname "Hard Core" by his men for his bravery in battle.
In 1968, Resorla became a U.S. citizen and continued his service in the Army Reserves until 1990 when he retired.
 In 1985 he joined a financial services firm, located in the World Trade Center, as security director. In 1993, when the WTC was bombed, Rescorla was instrumental in evacuating people from the building. Afterwards, he enacted a policy in which all employees of the firm practiced evacuation drills every three months.
September 11, 2001. Rick Rescorla was supposed to be on vacation getting ready for his daughters wedding. Instead he was at work covering a shift for one of his deputies so that he could go on vacation. When American Airlines Flight 11 hit Tower 1, Rescorla ignored officials advice to stay put and opted instead to put his evacuation drills to use.
 While evacuating the 3,800 employees of his firm in Towers 2 and 5 he kept reminding them "be proud to be an American ...everyone will be talking about you tomorrow" and sang God Bless America over his bullhorn.
 When Flight 175 struck Tower 2, Rescorla had already evacuated most of the employees from his firm as well as many others from other floors. He then went back in, despite being told he needed to evacuate himself. The last known words anyone heard him say were, "As soon as I make sure everyone else is out".
Tower 2 collapsed with Rick Rescorla last seen heading to the 10th floor looking for more people to help.
As a result of his actions that day, all but six employees of his firm made it out alive. One of those being him and three others being his deputies who followed him into Tower 2, Wesley Mercer, Jorge Velazquez, and Godwin Forde.

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. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.



"And now,for something completely different..."

The phrase in the title should be well known to any fan of  Monty Python's Flying Circus .

This has nothing to do with supporting the troops, but's my blog,isn't it? :)

The picture is of my brother,Kirby Daley, of whom I am inordinately proud . He is a financial analyst for Asian markets (he works in Hedge Funds for a French bank in Hong Kong)

Besides being "the best brother in the world" (IMHO:) he is also easily the most famous member of our family. He's been a regular on CNBC World since December 2002, he appears on CNBC World on Sunday nights , and also sometimes appears on Bloomberg and CNN.

As my youngest sis says here on her blog 

"It's pretty cool to have a brother on international TV"
(although, like my sis....I don't always understand exactly what he is saying,LOL.)
Anyway, also like my sis, I was never able to catch him on TV...we don't have that channel in our cable package,either. So, we were very excited when he told us recently that we could catch him on streaming video online.
Here's the latest clip of him on CNBC World (copy and paste the link in your browser)
and then there's a longer clip on  (copy and paste)
(click under 'Related Media on Demand' on the right side)
Just wanted to do some 'big sisterly' sharing about my very special brother!!!:) Besides being a 'media personality", he's also just an all around great guy:)
Love ya,Kirb!!

Things I didn't blog about last week....

Nothing like 'old news':) But these are things I never got around to passing along last week.

Since I kept forgetting to ask people to vote for me over at Dorkbloggers,LOL....the contest has ended and the winning 'dork' is ....Not Me. LOL. Seriously, the Winning Dorkblogger is announced here 

An organization that Did win a contest I passed on the news about is  Click here: Northern Voices Oral School for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing
Hurray for them! and be sure and check out the video the school posted,at that link :)
Random Threads had a One Year Anniversary that I failed to pass on in blogging about the tragedy at Tech. It's late, but you can still tell her "Happy Blogaversary!  Click here: 1 year anniversary
Cindy at  White Rose's Adventures  is blogging about her attempt at Basic Training......but she has also come up with a wonderful idea
The purpose of this site will be to connect those persons that are in basic training for all military branches and the American public that supports them.
CarnivAOL #37  was last week, and I neglected to pass that on also. It's not too late to check out the entries
(and yes, I have an entry there,lol,but that's not the only reason I'm 'pimping it out'(albeit late.)  Paul is looking for 'Guest Hosts' for future editions of the's the info about that 
" As well, I am actively looking for guest hosts for the carnival - doubly important right now as I have precious little free time in my personal life at the moment. If you are interested, read the entry here called hosting guidelines, and drop me a line to let me know what date you would like to host. Check out upcoming editions for available dates. Written by plittle  "
The next Guest Host will be May 1, 2007: CarnivAOL #38, hosted by Barbara, at Life & Faith in Caneyhead.
And then after that, it will  May 15, 2007: CarnivAOL #39, hosted by Kathi, at MAIL CALL! Supporting the Troops.
So far, all the upcoming dates after May 29, 2007: CarnivAOL #40, hosted by Sharon, at Golf and Other Stuff... are open:
June 12, 2007
June 26, 2007
July 10, 2007
July 24, 2007
So,why not consider checking out being a Guest Host?If you're interested? send him an email at
Also, dont forget the essay contest at A Soldier's Mind
and the essays that have already been submitted are posted here
Go check them out! and consider submitting your have until April 30.
The  2007 Milblog Conference  is fast approaching, registration ends April 27, if you haven't already registered.
And there is going to be a Baby Shower, for the newborn daughter of a wounded Marine,(previously mentioned on my blog, among many others)  DJ Emery 
Here's the news about the shower 
and MaryAnn of Soldiers Angels Germany, has a picture of the beautiful baby girl here
Here's a Soldiers Angels member who is going one step further 
to support the troops,check her out:) 
And also, don't forget Kat's latest card drive 
Lastly, this really has nothing to do with 'supporting the troops' (although I do have an Australian friend who is a member of Soldiers Angels and blogs here Click here: Yahoo!7 360° - charlee_rd's Blog - Entry for 24 April 2007 "Today we Lost Five" )
but,I just love this gentleman's page
I have been following him for two years now, he is "92 years young" and started his walks when he was 90 
Well, I think that catches me up on 'things I meant to blog about,but didn't".
Stay tuned tomorrow for the Wednesday Hero post.
God Bless Our Troops, and God Bless Their Families.
(Oh, and P.S.  Has anyone else been watching the Planet Earth series on  The Discovery Channel ? This is awesome!:)

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Hard to believe it was only a week ago today.....

Keeping the Virginia Tech students and faculty in our prayers as they start back to classes today.

Just wanted to pass on a few more links:

Click here: Virginia Tech | In Memoriam  

and also a song that is circulating on MySpace....out of all the songs that people have written so far, I think this was the one that touched my heart the most. 

 Many of our area schools last week had bomb threats, and there were rumors flying around at my daughter's school about bomb threats and 'hit lists' and 'death threats' made by other students. The local girl who was shot appears to be mending well, and there was a  powerfully sad story about the other local victim,which you will find on  the blog that has been started by the Colman family to update friends and family on his condition.  

Last week also saw the anniversary of the Oklahoma City bombings  Click here: Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum – Official Website

and the Columbine shootings.  Click here: Columbine Memorial

Our minister took the time Sunday to read each of the victim's names of the Virginia Tech shootings, and that started me thinking about some comments I have seen around the web, that we will forget the victim's names and just remember the shooter's name.

And I fear those commenters might be right. We all remember Harris and Klebold's names, or Timothy McVeigh's name

So, one last time before I move on to blogging about other subjects,let us please remember the victims. (And,if you pray,please say a prayer for their families and friends,and also for the wounded who are recovering.)


Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket


Saturday, April 21, 2007

WBC will NOT be picketing VA TECH funerals...Here's Why

This statement was released by the Westboro Baptist "Church":

Friday,April 20,2007

Westboro Baptist Church hereby cancels all pending pickets, and agrees not to schedule future pickets, related to the Virginia Tech Massacre,on the following terms and conditions;to wit:

In consideration for 3 hours of national radio time with Mike Gallagher on his National Radio Show-next Tuesday,April 24,from 9 a.m. to 12 noon New York Time-Westboro Baptist Church has agreed to cancel all pickets now pending and not to schedule future pickets related to the Virginia Tech massacre.......

(This is from the WBC website which it makes my skin crawl to link to, but I wanted to include this for verification, even if I dislike giving them the traffic. It's a PDF document listed under "Featured" on the right of the page)

While it's a relief to me that the families of those murdered at Virginia Tech will Not be subjected to the presence of the WBC? I'm not at all sure whether I agree with the means Mr. Gallagher used to halt their plans to picket the funerals.(And I can tell you one radio show I definitely WON'T be listening to on April 24!!!)

Here's Mike Gallagher's website  Click here: Mike Gallagher: Welcome to Mike's Home On The Web

and I was unaware that he had done this type of thing before, offering the WBC airtime to keep them from picketing.

Here is Mr. Gallagher's statement about the issue  Click here: Untitled Document

Since I posted the news that the WBC Was planning to picket the funerals of those massacred at Virginia Tech, I wanted to post this to let folks know why it's Not happening now.

For whatever my opinion is worth, I'm not so sure Mr. Gallagher had to make this 'deal with the devil' in order to halt the pickets,(at least for the funerals in the state of Virginia),as Virginia is one of those states that has a law on the books about funeral disruptions:

HB 372 (Carrico) Unlawful assembly at solemn ceremonies . Amends Virginia’s disorderly conduct statute by adding funerals to the existing list of gatherings that interlopers cannot willfully disrupt. Under the statute, a person cannot disrupt a funeral, memorial service, or the meeting of government body, school, literary society or place of religious worship if the disruption interferes with the orderly conduct of the gathering or causes acts of violence by the people at whom the disruption is directed.

(Virginia is one of about 32 states that Has passed, or are attempting to pass,  laws regarding protests at funerals, and this is in direct response to Phelps and company at the WBC. As for Federal law? see the Respect for America's Fallen Heroes Act of May 29,2006 )


As a troop supporter member of  Soldiers Angels , as a member of the Patriot Guard Riders , and as a reader of Milblogs .......I have been aware of the WBC and their hate-filled 'protests' for several years now.

One of the things that surprised me when I first posted that the WBC might be picketing the funerals of those who were killed at Virginia Tech, was how many people seemed to know nothing about the WBC?

So, in the interests of helping folks to educate themselves further about this group? Here are two Wikipedia entries that you might want to check out:

Click here: Fred Phelps - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Thursday, April 19, 2007


Friday, April 20, 2007 has been declared a  Statewide Day of Mourning here in Virginia by Governor Tim Kaine.

And Virginia Tech family members have also declared Friday an

Orange and Maroon Effect day, to "honor those killed during the shootings on Monday and to show support for Virginia Tech students, faculty , administrators, staff, alumni and friends."

(The "Orange and Maroon Effect" was born several years ago as in invitation to Tech fans to wear orange and maroon to Virginia Tech athletic events.)

Which is why I have changed my journal colors, just for today.

Please consider clicking the link on my sidebar, to read about the lives of each of the victims of the shootings.

We continue to hold all those affected by this tragedy in our prayers.

AOL Journals Editor Joe of Magic Smoke blog has a post here   

with some good links.

I know I have been blogging almost exclusively about the Virginia Tech massacre, and I do have other topics I want to post about. I will return to blogging about those another day, but not today.

Today, " We are all Hokies."


Westboro Baptist "Church" coming to VT funerals?

From a fellow Soldiers Angels member on MySpace comes this news:

Virginia Tech Funerals to be Target of Westboro Baptist Picket

Never missing the opportunity to take advantage of a tragedy, Fred Phelps and his gang of haters at Westboro Baptist Church plan to picket the funerals of those killed in the Virginia Tech shootings, according to a message on their website (which I haven't linked on purpose):

"WBC will preach at the funerals of the Virginia Tech students killed on campus during a shooting rampage April 16, 2007. You describe this as monumental horror, but you know nothing of horror -- yet. Your bloody tyrant Bush says he is 'horrified' by it all. You know nothing of horror -- yet. Your true horror is coming. 'They shall also gird themselves with sackloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness upon all their heads' (Eze. 7:18).
Why did this happen, you ask? It's simple. Your military chose to shoot at the servants of God today, and all they got for their effort was terror. Then, the LORD your God sent a crazed madman to shoot at your children. Was God asleep while this took place? Was He on vacation? Of course not. He willed this to happen to punish you for assailing His servants."

No doubt they'll blame the shootings on the gays as well. But as many people have noted, the more these nuts trot themselves out, the more a symbol of the need for tolerance they become.

(Like the poster above? I will not link to the Westboro site. If you wish to confirm this for yourself? the site is easy enough to find with a search.)

UPDATE Because of a comment left here, I thought perhaps these videos might give some people a better idea of the kind of 'preaching' that Fred Phelps and his group might do if they attend any funerals of those killed Monday at Virginia Tech.

 Click here: Fred Phelps & Westboro Baptist Church "visit wounded soldiers" at Walter Reed - Google Video


 Click here: YouTube - Westboro Baptist Church in El Paso

The news that WBC might be attending these funerals makes me ill and makes my blood boil.

While we have stood with the Patriot Guard Riders  at the funeral of a local fallen soldier, the Patriot Guard Riders will not be shielding the families of those massacred at Virginia Tech, as they had this message posted on their website.

 Board of Directors Statement about Incident at Virginia Tech -- 16 April, 2007

First and foremost, on behalf of the Patriot Guard Riders and its membership of over 88,000 nationwide, I want to extend our deepest sympathies to all the families that have been impacted by the tragedy at Virginia Tech. There are no words to convey our hurt - nor our condolences - to a proper level. Suffice to say, you are not alone in mourning the loss of a family member, or a friend. The Patriot Guard Riders – and this nation – share in your loss.    

There are times when a nation sits in pure shock at the news of a tragedy… 16 APR 07 was such a day. As members of the Patriot Guard Riders, we are all too familiar with the loss of great people. We are all too familiar with young lives – full of promise and hope – ending far too soon. Perhaps nothing is more tragic. This organization was founded with the purpose of honoring those that have given of themselves to serve a cause higher than their own… that of their country. For this, they earned our respect, our admiration, and our unwavering gratitude. However, as we all would agree, great people occupy all walks of life – and impact us everyday. There is a quote from a movie that I am reminded of… “You don’t have to wear a stripe on your arm to have honor”. At times such as this… we realize how true this is.    

This nation lost 32 innocent lives – some of them young adults just starting to see their lives take shape – still preparing to make their mark in this world. We lost teachers whose charge was to shape and develop the minds of the future. We lost students who had eyes full of hope, promise, and dreams – all left unrealized, and unfulfilled. We all lost something yesterday… even if it was a simple notion of a peaceful serene existence at such an age in life.    

The question has already arisen, “Will the Patriot Guard Riders attend services if invited?”  

Some of the victims in this tragedy were members of the Virginia Tech ROTC program. If we are invited by their families, as an organization we will accept these missions and do whatever we can. However, some of the victims were not involved in the military. For those, the Patriot Guard Riders – as an organization – will not be involved. That being said, let me continue…    

The strength of the Patriot Guard Riders is not in the organization – but in the membership. Look at the matter in this light… the Patriot Guard Riders is one organization. One organization made up of over 88,000 members - 88,000 members focused on doing what is right to preserve honor, reverence, and respect. As an organization, the PGR must adhere to its mission statement.However, as a person who has vowed to uphold statements like “Never again” and “Because it’s the right thing to do”… I have a choice to take action where action is needed – and support is requested. If you have the opportunity to assist a family in need… whether it be under the name of the PGR or not – do it. Do it, and let others know, for as I said, the strength is not in the organization – but in the people.   

Good organizations don’t make good people. Good people make good organizations. And good people do what is right… and take care of our families.    

Our families lost some of their own… let’s do our best – on an organizational level – and on a personal level – to take care of them as we would in any other instance.          

In memory of those lost on 16 APR 07…


While I respect the decision of the PGR to adhere to their mission statement? I cannot bear to think of the family and friends of any of those lost on April 16th at Virginia Tech to be subjected to a picket by Fred Phelp's group while they lay their loved one to rest.

So, I am posting this tonight. Please feel free to copy it,link to it, but most of all.....PASS THIS ON,however you wish to do so.

And please be ready, as we will be, to...(.as it says above).....take action where action is needed – and support is requested. If you have the opportunity to assist a family in need…DO IT


Tuesday, April 17, 2007


(The following post is from the Wednesday Hero Blogroll. There is more about the blogroll at the end of the post.)


This Weeks Soldier Was Submitted By Anna


Chief Mast Sgt. John Gebhardt
Chief Master Sgt. John Gebhardt Superintendent of the 22nd Wing Medical Group at McConnell Air Force Base
Have you heard of Chief Master Sgt. John Gebhardt?
 Maybe you have and maybe you haven't. CMSgt. Hebhardt gain some notoriety recently. Not for an action that he took on the battlefield, but rather for a
(not shown because it is graphic, please click the link to see the picture)
 that was taken of him.
In 2006, CMSgt. John Gebhardt was photographed holding a little Iraqi girl that had been injured. Her family had been attacked by insurgents. Both of her parents were killed, along with many of her siblings, and she had been shot in the head and left for dead. But she was tougher than that. She was brought to Balad Air Base Hospital where she was operated on and ultimately saved.
 As you can imagine, it was an extremely hard time for this little girl. Her recovery was hellish.
 But when CMSgt. Gebhardt would hold her, she seemed to be comforted. He spent many nights sleeping in a chair with her in his arms. The picture wast taken by a fellow airman while CMSgt. Gebhardt and the little girl were napping. Said CMSgt. Gebhardt, "I'm sure that probably just gave her some inner peace that she could reach."

( From Indian Chris  "On a side note. This is why I started doing these Wednesday Hero posts. Because of people like Chief Master Sgt. John Gebhardt. It's soldiers like him that make me proud of our military." )


 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. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.


How the Virginia Tech Shootings Affected Us Locally(And Soldiers Angels Respond)

From  THE DAILY NEWS-RECORD  , our local paper.

Two Harrisonburg Students Among Those Shot In Rampage  By Kelly Jasper and Heather Bowser


My daughter attends school with the younger sister of one of those students shot. This hits so close to home, for so many in our community.
Driving home from taking my daughter to school this morning, I wept when I heard this story on the radio

 Liviu Librescu was a Holocaust survivor. And that is what brought the tears to my eyes once again, after so many shed yesterday and today for all the innocent lives lost. 

To have survived the Holocaust, and then lost his life in a classroom in a Virginia university, protecting his students from a murderer.

Our prayers for all of those affected by this horrendous tragedy continue.


(More area news stories)

Click here: Welcome to News Virginian: Serving the Waynesboro, VA region | Attack resonates in Waynesboro

Click here: The News Leader - - Staunton, Va.

And the Roanoke Times has a Guestbook at to express condolences.

UPDATE 4/18/07 
The Response of Soldiers Angels to the shootings.



Monday, April 16, 2007

Virginia Tech Shooting Rampage

I have no words. My thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected.
( A Tag being circulated on MySpace.)
It seems naive to say "I can't believe this has happened in my state", but I am just numb at the extent of this tragedy.

Monday Morning Reading

The above pic really has nothing to do with the's a view of our back deck during the freakish St. Patrick's day snowstorm, when we put out birdseed for all the neighborhood birds.

Sharing the picture Does give me the opportunity,however, to share yet another dorky moment in my life:)

Ever since St. Patrick's day, we've continued to put out birdseed in both a pan on the back deck , and in the bird feeder.  We have Tons of neighborhood birds stopping by (the cat Really enjoys this!:) Because there are so many birds eating at 'Chez Kathi's", we've bought one of the Giant bags of wild bird seed.

Yesterday, I realized that both the pan and the feeder were empty. No problem filling up the pan....but as I reached above my head to try and fill the bird feeder? It occurred to me,just that Fraction of a second TOO LATE....that it probably was NOT a good idea to try and lift a 15 lb.bag of birdseed above my head and pour it into the feeder.

As I stood in the 'rain' of birdseed,lol, I even Said that out loud..."Well, This wasn't a good idea!" (and then I was hoping that none of my neighbors had happened to look outside right then! Although,if they did? it probably led to some interesting breakfast conversations..."hey,did you see the crazy lady across the way pouring birdseed all over herself this morning? And then talking to herself?" :)

Sigh. Somehow, when you're prone to dorkiness? even trying to take care of our feathered friends can become yet another episode in 'the adventures of a dork.'

Having shared that illuminating glimpse into my life?:) I'll move on to sharing a few of the posts that caught my eye this morning (when I woke up with a fever,sore throat, and feeling like a train hit me.....although I guess it could be a reaction to taking a birdseed shower? it really feels...yuck....more like the flu.)

THIS,in my humble opinion, is a 'Must Read'.  Click here: Defense Tech: The Sunday Paper

(and it's also originally featured on  The Sandbox ,and it's on  )

The book by the young Marine who wrote this haunting,heart-wrenching post is here  Click here: The Crumpled Press | Publications | When I Wished I Was Here

(yet another to add to my 'must read' list )

For other news of veterans? Kat at Yikes! has a wonderful post up about a visit from one of 'her' soldiers  Click here: YIKES!: A Weekend to Remember: The Outlaw Visit

and then, sadly, The Thunder Run has a story about someone else from the same unit 

Posts from members of  Soldiers Angels :


Click here: Minnesota Soldiers' Angel: Two Letters, One Emotional Angel

and this Soldiers Angels  member always puts up a post about the fallen  Click here: Yahoo! 360° - Life In The Northeast - Remember. . .

CJ from A Soldiers Perspective also has a new post up at his remembrance site for fallen soldiers 

 Click here: They Have Names - A Tribute To The Lives Of Our Fallen

(and, per White Rose....Welcome Home, Again,Cindy!!....I found out A Soldiers Perspective has also been nominated for several 'Bloggers' Choice' awards)

Click here: White Rose's Adventures

You'll have to register (free registration) but please consider going by and voting at the Bloggers Choice website  

(and check out some of the other blog categories. I love popping by from time to time to read  Go Fug Yourself and  Wil Wheaton , for instance:)
And,lastly, I haven't really posted anything about the recently announced extension of  Army deployments. There are far better bloggers than I posting opinions and news about it. But I will say that more than one online or offline friend has been affected by it, and I'm keeping them, and their loved ones who are serving, in my prayers!
That's all for now.
God Bless Our Troops, and Their Families.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Please Vote for Me:)

Hey, the Dorkbloggers voting poll is finally working,Yay!

My entry for the contest is here 

and if you'd please consider voting for me? Voting runs through the 23, and you can vote here 
(they experienced technical difficulties with the first link)
Please, don't you want to help make me an "Award Winning Dork"? LOL.
Thanks! a bunch:)

Saturday, April 14, 2007

April: The Month of the Military Child

Since April is  The Month of The Military Child

I wanted to post this poem I found on a friend's blog.

I am a small and precious child,

My dad has been sent to fight…

The only place I'll see his face,

Is in my dreams at night

He will be gone too many days

For my young mind to keep track.


I may be sad, but I am proud

My daddy's got your back.



I am a caring mother.

My son may go to war…

My mind is filled with worries

That I have never known before.

Every day I try to keep,

My thoughts from turning black.


I may be scared, but I am proud

My son has got your back.


I am a strong and loving wife,

With a husband soon to go.

There are times I'm terrified,

In a way most never know.

I bite my lip and force a smile,

As I watch my husband pack…


My heart may break, but I am proud

My husband's got your back.


I am a soldier, serving proudly, standing tall.

I fight for freedom, yours and mine, by answering this call.

I do my job while knowing the thanks it sometimes lacks.


Say a prayer that I come home

It's me who's got your back.

                                                   Autumn Parker
(And I have searched all over, but no one seems to know the author of the poem.)
UPDATE: Thanks to Flag Gazer from Gazing at the Flag , she sent me the following about the author of the poem.

The creation of Operation Homelink was inspired by this poem written by Autumn Parker
as a personal tribute to her husband while he was serving overseas. Operation Homelink acknowledges the sacrifice that all of the
brave men and women of our military make as they protect our freedom daily.


Hurry and Go Vote for this Video:)

"My bad" for not posting this sooner.....Citizen Reign has this video entry at MusicNation, and the voting for it ends in ONE DAY.

 So, head on over to Music Nation (where you'll have to's free) and give Citizen Reign a vote...they are right now in second place!)

Update see comment more week of voting!!


Our Young Man in Basic Training

It's been awhile since I updated on the boyfriend's son in Basic Training.He's currently at  Ft. Leonard Wood , and on March 29, he received his Values Tag  There was this message posted about that on the

"Hello family and friends of Alpha Company, 796th Military Police Battalion.  Over the past 10 weeks of training the cadre have seen an unbelievable transformation from civilian to Soldier. 

During a ceremony on the 29th of March, the Soldiers of Alpha Company were presented with a small tag to place on their ID tags.  This tag has the 7 Army Values printed to spell the word leadership:




                  Selfless Service



                                    Personal Courage

The Army Values Tag is a symbol that a person has completed the transformation and embodies those qualities necessary in the life of a Soldier.  This is a milestone in their service to the nation."

Dustin is now in AIT, which is Advanced Individualized Training.

"In Advanced Individualized Training (AIT) Soldiers learn the skills necessary to perform their jobs. In general, AIT is a classroom learning environment similar to college or vocational technical school.  Advanced training schools last from a few weeks to a few months, depending upon the complexity of the subject matter. Soldiers receive their military occupational specialty (MOS) upon completion of AIT. "

A Military Occupational Specialty (MOS) is a job classification in use in the United States Army. (If I'm reading the MOS list correctly? he will be 31B Military Police )

We are so very proud of him! He is now a Squad Leader and a Bay Leader, and also received a Commander's Card of Excellence. Hooah! Way to go!



Updates, Friday the Dorkteenth Voting, and an Essay Contest at A Soldiers Mind

Some updates on folks I've blogged about previously.

Cindy of White Rose's Adventures should be home from Army Basic training, after being unable to complete the training due to health problems. While she is upset about this, it in no way diminishes the enormous respect and admiration I have for her. I think it takes a lot of guts to even Attempt Army training when you are 42 years old!!

And I think it's more honorable to have Tried to do something,even if you are unable to finish it as you would have wished to....than never to have tried at all.

You can read her latest post here  Click here: White Rose's Adventures

And here's an update on a wounded soldier that I (among Many others) passed on the request for prayers for   Click here: Soldiers' Angels Germany: Update on DJ Emery

In the "Friday the Dorkteenth" contest at Dorkbloggers

(and my entry for that contest is here Click here: "Friday the Dorkteenth"  )

they have finally posted a way to vote (although, in perhaps typical Dork fashion? I don't think it's quite working correctly yet. LOL.Plus, it still says you are to vote the week of MARCH 14-21, and I for the life of me cannot figure out how to time travel....although,hmmmm....maybe that's why the poll-voting-thingy isn't working?) Anyways.....hopefully at some point, you'll actually be able to vote at this link   Click here: DorkBloggers-Come to the Dork Side...: The time has come to GET YOUR DORK ON!

I think it would be cool to win a "Dork" contest,LOL (which should tell you quite a bit about my personality right there:) and although I'll of course say "Hey, vote for me!" please be sure to check out the other entries...there are some very good ones!

For a more serious contest? Terri and Anthony over at A Soldiers' Mind are having an essay contest on What It Means to Support the Troops 

(and there's already an update on it here  Click here: A Soldier’s Mind » Essay Contest: Update 1
A worthy cause you can vote for was sent to me in an email from my sister, who blogs here (along with her husband) 
A friend of their's has a hearing impaired child who attends a school that is attempting to win a contest being run by the Fastbreak Foundation of the Minnesota Timberwolves. You can read more about the contest here 
and the website of the school is here 
The school website says to come by there and vote every day. (and if you have trouble doing it from the link on my blog, just copy and paste the school website into your own browser and try it )
For other updates from 'blogs I read",
 Sack at Half a World Away  Click here: Half a World Away: Qatar Trip - Part 1 
The Online Chaplain  
and BrassyLady,a fellow Soldiers Angel member from Canada, has links to condolence guestbooks for the 6 Canadian soldiers recently lost   Click here: When the power of love overcomes the love of power: Canada loses 6 heroes
Lastly, there are updates posted on both the CaringBridge pages listed in my sidebar, on Eric Edmundsen and Jose Pequeno.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Holy Schnike! Time for a Blog Post

Holy Schnike!(reference from the movie 'Tommy Boy' , one of my favorite exclamations:)

It's been days since I posted anything!

Lots of odds and ends to talk about, I've been on the Internet these past few days,LOL, just haven't had time between work and life to pull together a post till now.

First of all, for "Soldiers Angels around the Web"? Here's some posts I bookmarked to pass on

Click here: Soldiers Angels New York: Drag Racer Supports Troops

Click here: Soldiers' Angels Kansas City: Soldiers' Angels: Walking, Talking History

Next, this was an interesting read....(that I came across accidentally when looking for something else altogether...the usual way I find things,LOL)
Then, this is a blog worth checking out 
(and thanks to Gazing at the Flag ,for reminding me about it!)
I wanted to pass on news about this bicycle ride  Click here: World T.E.A.M. Sports
(as I am supposed to be helping out at a stop along the ride as part of  Soldiers Angels )
And I came across two posts on  this blog  about the bike ride
(have to support the 'other' type of 'bikers' brother-in-law is a 'biker' :)
Here's a story that makes my blood boil!!  Click here: How Specialist Town Lost His Benefits
Don't forget the 2007 Milblog Conference coming up in May! And they are looking for donations for the Webcast,Chatroom  
AOL Journals Editor Joe blogged about a 'blogger's code of conduct' forming because of a brouhaha 
and then I came across this mention of a "Milblogs ROE" on this blog  Click here: The Yankee Sailor - A Superior Blog, Courtesy of an American Sailor
For "News about Music from the Troops"...I spend a lot of time on MySpace, and because of that, I got a message from this Army combat medic
to check out a song called "Drive On" by a friend and fellow combat medic here
I like the song (sorry to all the 'hip hop haters"...I like just about anything but opera, I'm pretty varied in my music tastes:)
The combat medic also told me that 25% of the proceeds from the sale of the CD would be going to the family of this soldier 
(along with some donations to other military organizations.)
And,because I Google everything, I also came across this about the family of Jeffrey Williams  Click here: STNG ::Help on the way for fallen soldiers' families
Lastly, I leave you with a link to this video, of an "antiAmerican" Squirrel,LOL
(H/T to the boyfriend,lol, for finding that one:)
God bless our Troops, and Their Families.

Monday, April 9, 2007

WEDNESDAY HERO on Monday 4/9/2007-SSgt Keith "Matt" Maupin

(The post below is part of the Wednesday Hero blogroll, which is brought to you weekly by Indian Chris at Right-Wing & Right Minded, and  there is more about the blogroll at the end of the post.

But today seemed to me the more appropriate day to post this.)


This Weeks Solider Was Summited By Lt. Schneider


SSgt. Keith "Matt" Maupin 24 years old from Batavia, Ohio Army Reserves 724th Transportation Company
 MIA Since April 9, 2004
Strength, perseverance and determination is how you would describe the family of SSgt. Keith Maupin.
Because even though their son has been missing now for almost three years, his parents still haven't given up hope that he's still alive.
 Said his father, Keith Maupin, "I'm saying it ain't over till the fat lady sings and when she sings, I'm going to choke her. That's what I say. They're going to find Matt." His mother, Carolyn, was quoted as saying, "We're to keep our hope up. And praying until they can prove to us 100 percent either way. And that's what I'm going to do. And I realize we only have a 50/50 chance here, but I'm not going the low road. I'm going the high road"
SSGt. Maupin, who was PFC. Maupin when he was captured and has since received two promotions, was reported MIA when his fuel convoy came under attack near the Baghdad International Airport.
Along with Maupin was Sgt. Elmer Krause and seven employees of U.S. contractor Kellogg, Brown & Root. All of whom were either rescued or escaped.
Seven days later, on April 16, Al-Jazeera aired a video tape of Maupin in which he was forced to admit that he was went to Iraq unwillingly. Then on June 28, 2004, Al-Jazerra reported that PFC. Maupin had been executed by a group calling themselves Persistent Power Against the Enemies of God and the Prophet. But no concrete proof has surfaced either way.
 His parents have created a website called
 Yellow Ribbon Support Center
if you would like to check it out.
 And while most in the media have forgotten Keith Maupin, Wednesday Hero hasn't.

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. If you would like to participate in honoring the brave men and women who serve this great country, you can find out how by going here.


This 'N That, and "hate mail"

Since a large part of my blogging philosophy is "pimping out' other links:) I wanted to just pass on several links that caught my eye this weekend.

THIS is a 'must read', and I totally agree with A.C.....I think everyone should be posting this on their blogs.

Click here: A_C - Free To Be Me: We Have Not Earned The Right To Forget

Then,via Blackfive   Click here: BLACKFIVE: Marine Lieutenant Andrew Kinard Update

I was led to this slideshow from one of the links  Click here: Audio slideshow: Andrew Kinard's Marine reunion

And it was also via both Blackfive and The Mudville Gazette (and please click on both their links for 'more of the story") that I was led to this story   Click here: The Denver Post - Line drawn in park over statue

Lastly, I also have a page over on Yahoo 360 

and this morning, in response to my 'blast' on that page
I received this message:
To support the TRUTH, please check out soldiers of curse in IRAQ !! your USA is bleeding to death!!
I am very with this, don't you see Smoke going out from white house because they felt the dangerous curse is falling on you!!!
be patient, in 2012 ! everything will be clear to you
Go! to hell!
Well, I guess that's one way to start Monday morning! Since that's really the first piece of 'hate mail' I've received, I suppose I've been extremely lucky thus far.

"Friday the Dorkteenth"

Dorkbloggers is having a contest, and you can read about it here  

 Click here: DorkBloggers-Come to the Dork Side...: The time has come to GET YOUR DORK ON!

(And although  Andy the Bastard  once left a comment on my journal that mentioned Aonther definition of 'dork'...which is,um....'a part of a whale',lol, to put it 'p.c.'.....I believe This definition is closer to what Dorkbloggers is about...............

dork \dork\ (d[^o]rk), n.
    1. a person who is stupid, socially inept, or ridiculous; )

While it was difficult for me to pick out only ONE 'dorky' entry to submit for the contest (as the love of my life put it "there are So MANY"...oohhh,"harsh",LOL)

I finally decided that the 'dorky moment' that I first mentioned as part of a post here in 2006 is one of my Most Dorky Moments.

So, for your reading pleasure:) here is my submission for "Friday the Dorkteenth" (and as soon as I figure out how they are doing the voting, I'll pass that along!)

I had previously had an experience where I hit the metal 'Children's Miracle Network' donation thing at the Dairy Queen drive-thru window while pulling up to pay, and thought I was the only person who'd ever done this.

However, I was very excited the other day to meet someone else who'd done the same thing!I went home from Subways(which is next to Dairy Queen) and told my boyfriend"Hey, I met someone else who hit the donation thing at the drive-thru window at Dairy Queen!"

He asked me,"Exactly HOW would this subject ever come up in the first place?"

 I said"well, when I was in Subways, I was reading the menu on the board and walking sideways at the same time(doing 2 things at once again, when will I learn?) and I sort of bumped into the chips display and it kind of got caught on my jeans pocket for a second.....and then the poor kid behind the counter tried to stifle a laugh,so I looked at him and said 'yeah, I am a dork' .

(The boyfriend said,"I'm not sure you needed to tell him that, he might have already figured that out!")

and I went on to tell the kid...'not too long ago I ran into the Children's Miracle network donation thing while pulling up to the drive thru over at Dairy Queen" and the kid told me 'Oh, I've done that!"

and I was just so HAPPY to learn that someone else had done it!

Well, both my boyfriend and my daughter were convulsed with laughter while I was happily telling them this story, and then my boyfriend finally managed to gasp out....."the picture of you walking thru Subways with the chips display attached to you, in my head!"......and doubled over laughing again.And I said "Hey! It was only caught on my jeans pocket for just a second!"

I emailed this story to my family(who are used to stories like this ) and my MOM emailed back later in the day and said "This is hysterical.I keep rereading this just to laugh."(which I thought mothers were supposed to be a little more sympathetic?lol)


(well, that's my submission, hope you enjoy it! and for further evidence of dorkiness, I really have no idea whatsoever as to a) why my fonts changed in the middle of the post and b)why I can't put all of the post in the same color!:)