I usually speak about things that I have personally experienced. So I'll say right away, I am not a veteran. Though I do come from a family of veterans. My Dad was
in World War II and was in The Battle of The Bulge. I had one brother who served in Vietnam and another who was a Vietnam Era Veteran.
But it was watching my ex-wife's father "battle" the VA for a number of years, that my impression of the veteran and the present day serviceman has changed. They
deserve our respect and admiration.
|Love Story... A Photo Essay
The video below was created from photos provided by Tim Dodd Photography.
If you'd like to read more about Taylor Morris' story read Tim's Blog.
Christmas in Iraq...
Please take the time to read the Christmas in Iraq article I wrote about an e-mail exchange between a father and his son. Hopefully, next
Christmas everyone of these soldiers will be home for the holidays.
Poem read at new Veterans Park...
On Veterans Day 2005, my poem Men (And Women) of Closter was read at the christening of a new veterans park, in my home town of
Closter, NJ. Howard Bartholf, a former resident and Vietnam veteran did me the honor of reading the poem, in my absence. Click on the
picture below, to read my poem which proclaimed November 11, 2005 as Closter Vietnam Era Veterans Day.
Ryan's Dad has shared with me their story. A story of family
and pride in the jobs they do. To read more of these exchanges
between a father and his son, please click here to read all the
Letters From Iraq.
|Ryan - the "main man" in the
Letters From Iraq
Apache Longbow pilot
I received the following e-mail from Ryan's Dad on September 20th, 2007.
"Thought I would share this with you for what it is worth. Forty years ago tomorrow on Thursday 21 September 1967 I arrived back home at my parents home in
New Jersey from Vietnam. I call it my "Freedom Day". I left my unit in Vietnam on the 17th of September and flew to Camh Ranh Bay where I waited for my turn to
get on the big silver "Freedom Bird" as we called it, back to the states. I caught that bird on the 19th and flew to Fort Lewis Washington (Seattle). I arrived there late at
night and went through customs and was processed for a new uniform and further assignment following my thirty days leave. There was a huge building with
hundreds of ladies working all night sewing and tailoring uniforms. I went in one side in my combat gear and came out the other with a brand new dress uniform
complete with stripes and medals affixed. As it was late, I had to spend the night at the Seattle airport sleeping in a room set up with bunks by the Red Cross. Early the
next morning (the 20th) I was off for my trip back home to the East Coast. On the way back East, I stopped to see my sister at the University of Oklahoma. When I
pulled up in the cab in front of her dorm, I was met by my sister and some friends who promptly told me I had to get out of my uniform quickly as it was to dangerous
for me to be seen in it due to the anti-war protests going on campus. I had to borrow civilian clothes from my sisters male friends as I had nothing but my uniform.
Needless to say, I got out of Norman Oklahoma early the next morning and headed home. I arrived late that night at the airport in NYC and was met by my parents and
my girl friend Janet (now my wife). I will never forget my mother running out to the plane as I stepped off. It was a very emotional and wonderful reunion.. I swore
the day I left Vietnam that nothing would ever get me down like that experience again and despite bumps along the road of life nothing has. Now, I have a son in Iraq
and I know what my parents went through so many years ago. I also make it a point to thank a service person for his service to our country no matter where I see him
or her. It only takes me a minute to stick out my hand and say "THANKS FOR SERVING". So, now you all know why I will be smiling all day tomorrow, no matter
what the day may throw at me. Thanks for letting me share this memory. Life is good....."
with our veterans