Tonight I wanted to take a few minutes to say something about the average person.
Today, in Santa Ana, CA a Good Samaritan was driving down Main Street and saw a young girl that was being dragged away and appeared to be in distress. The woman intervened and stopped a child abduction.
A few days ago, a 15 year old student in Parkland, FL was shot 5 times while saving nearly 20 classmates from a school shooter. An assistant coach and another teacher both died that day protectin...g students. A custodian, along with multiple other teachers, with quick thinking, managed to save countless others.
A few weeks ago, Rescue Squad Volunteers from the city of Allen, NE, during the whiteout conditions of a blizzard used snowplows, a front end loader and four wheel drives to make not 1 but 2 runs to a Sioux City hospital. One carrying a woman with abdominal pains, another with a man who had a heart attack whose life would have been lost without those volunteers. To put this in perspective, Allen, NE has a population of 326, there are 31 Rescue Squad Volunteers.
A few years ago, 3 young American men, along with a French National and a Briton, on board the Thalys No 9364 train, traveling from Amsterdam to Paris, charged, tackled and subdued an Islamic terrorist, stopping a massacre from happening.
None of these people got out of bed that morning thinking that they would become heroes that day. By all indications they started that day as a average person. They came from all walks of life but all of them had one thing in common, they acted and they acted not in defense of themselves, but in defense of others.
New Year’s Eve is a day when everyone traditionally spends time looking at the past year remembering those that we lost, the things that we’ve done and the good times that we’ve had.
I think that it’s time to start a new tradition, we need to take this time to look at the new year and determine how we’re going to honor & memorialize those that we’ve lost, not in big ways, but in the everyday way that we live our lives. It doesn’t matter if it means dropping your spare change... into the donation jar at the checkout, volunteering, dropping off a blanket at a charitable organization or taking an extra few minutes each week to give help and encouragement to someone who really needs it. You don’t know what kind of impact that you can have on someone’s life just by taking a few seconds to say something or reach out a hand in help.
Even those of us who don’t live a perfect life can have an impact. A business man with a flair for grand gestures that used bribery and persuasion to be extremely successful once had a lifesaving impact on over 1000 of his workers, one or two at a time.
His name was Oscar Schindler.
John F. Kennedy said “One person can make a difference, and everyone should try.”
Tonight I had a very difficult, yet rewarding task. I had to set up an iPad for a functionally blind client. Sitting there trying to make the product work for them the way that they needed, along with trying to change my viewpoint to that of someone that couldn't see was very frustrating, but the experience of being able to put a piece of technology in someone's hands and show them how it can work for them was something that I'll never forget.
In honor of my many friends on both sides of the political fence, I will try to keep this as nonpolitical as possible, but I feel strongly about this issue.
Today a lot of us spent time to honor our Veterans on this Veterans Day. Either to visit a Veteran, living or dead, attend a parade or to simply provide a free meal as many restaurants did and that’s important. It’s also important to remember that over 45 million men and women have served in the United States Armed Forces.... Of those over 1.4 million have died protecting our freedom.
Regardless of your political views or your stance on our current, future and past wars, you are only able to express those views because of Veterans and the wars that they have fought. You can say what you want about a politician or a President, without fear of reprisal. Just to put that into perspective, 4 men in Zimbabwe were arrested for booing the president of Zimbabwe's wife this week. So as you sit there reading this, you have to remember that you can only do so because of the sacrifice that others have made.
I would like every one of you to do me a favor over the next year. The next time you see someone standing in line in front of you at the checkout that’s wearing a hat or shirt letting you know that they’re a Veteran, take a second and thank them.
There are about 20 million living Veterans today, we need to take the time to thank each and every one of them.
Just got this from the VA. Please share.
A brief request and a favor. Right now, while you’re reading this … put this in your phone. National Veterans Crisis Line, 800-273-8255.
You never know when you or a Veteran you know might need some help, right now. Now you have a number that can help.
I now have my first book available in paperback on Amazon! Thanks for everyone who bought the Kindle edition and special thanks to Krystal Floyd for the cover art!
A little bit of a different direction for me this time, this isn’t about a particular war hero, but more of an act of bravery and defiance of an entire nation.
It was 1940, just after Christmas, London was enjoying a brief respite from the German bombings that had begun on September 5th of that year. Then, on December 29th, the Luftwaffe attacked with renewed vigor. In just a few short hours around 100,000 bombs fell on the city. That night more of the city was destroyed tha...n in the Great Fire of London of 1666.
Fires were raging across the city, 14 firefighters perished with another 250 injured. As the night wore on, Winston Churchill insisted that St. Paul’s Cathedral be saved at all costs. Firefighters and volunteers battled the blazes around, and at one point, in the Cathedral’s library isle, with buckets and sand, several bombs hit the Cathedral directly. The situation was so dire, that Edward R Murrow announced in a live broadcast in the United States, “The church that means most to London is gone. St. Paul’s Cathedral is burning to the ground as I talk to you now.”
But the British weren’t done. Two teams of specialists recruited from the Royal Institute of British Architects were crawling along beams with hand pumps to reach the burning sections of the roof, the heroic efforts of those involved resulted in the saving of St. Paul’s.
Herbert Mason, the Chief Photographer for London’s Daily Mail, was watching, and through a break in the smoke took the picture that, when released 2 days later, showed the only thing visible through the smoke and flames, St. Paul’s Cathedral still standing.
Londoners and all of Britain rallied, in the words of Dorothy Barton, “I felt a lump in my throat because, like so many people, I felt that while St. Paul’s survived, so would we.”
There are no real stories behind why Winston Churchill decided to save St. Paul’s. Some say he knew that it would boost morale, others say it was just his inability to let the Nazi’s take everything that Britain had. Either way, that iconic picture of St. Paul’s in the middle of the devastation, gave the British people one more reason to continue the fight.
On the eve of the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Pearl Harbor, I want to take just a short time to mention something that I’ve never covered before, so if you would please indulge me for a few minutes, I would be thankful.
We move through our day, through our week, through our lives and we don’t take the time to look at the person next to us and ask ourselves if they’re alright, or what has happened in their life, if they’re happy and secure, or are they fearful, angry, h...ungry or hurt.
On average, in the United States, there are 117 suicides every day and a recent VA study found that 20 of those are Veterans.
In the United States alone, 20 people every minute are physically abused by their partner, with approximately 21% of those being attributed to Combat Veterans with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
So take a minute, tell the checker at the grocery store to have a nice day, or ask them how their day is going, you may give them a second to relief some stress or share something from their life. If you see someone wearing a Veteran’s hat or shirt, ask them where they served, you may be surprised at the stories that you hear, I’ve shared at least one on this page that surprised me. And when you’re done, thank them for their time and/or service. Your words may be the only the only kind thing that they’ve heard that day, I'm not saying that it will always help, but it can't hurt.
I’m not quite done yet, I would ask that three of my Facebook friends please copy and repost the information below.
Suicide Prevention Hotline: 800-273-8255
Veterans Suicide Hotline: 800-273-8255
Domestic Violence Hotline: 800-799-7233
We all need to take a minute to stop and think. Since the beginning of time two of the most divisive topics of conversation have been religion and politics. We need to be thankful that we live in a country where we can freely discuss both. In parts of the middle-east a man can be legally killed for blasphemy. In North Korea if you criticize the government you can not only be put to death but evidently can be put to death by anti-aircraft guns. I don’t always agree with everyt...hing that my friends post. I even try very hard not to get involved in the conversations. But I am proud of this country and every day that I stop and think about this, I say a silent thanks to all of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice in order to ensure that we are able to have these discussions, arguments and even protests about our political system, but let’s not forget why we are able to freely have these discussions.
Lest we forget…
It’s been a little bit since I’ve posted anything and as most, if not all, of you know, a lot of the stuff that I post about happened before our lifetimes. But this is something that a lot of us will remember.
On October 25, 1983 Operation Fury was launched. A group of 7600 American soldiers, made up of members of the US Army’s Rapid Deployment Force, US Marines, US Army Delta Force and US Navy Seals as well as other forces landed on the island nation of Grenada.
Most of wha...
On Tuesday June 21, 2016, the White House made an announcement that was long overdue. Thanks to the hard work of an amateur historian by the name of William Vollano, Lieutenant Colonel Charles Kettles will be awarded the Medal of Honor sometime next month, but I get ahead of myself, I will tell you this story as factually as I am able, because this story is heroic enough without embellishments. I have borrowed this information from the official page of the US Army.
It was Ma...
I'll offer a disclaimer before this one, this is NOT a political statement, although I will address politics.
In this election year, you will hear much rhetoric from our friends running for public office. All of them tell us that they want to protect our way of life, that they want to ensure that, as American's, we enjoy safety and freedom. Each has their own way of wanting to do that and are telling us that they are the only ones that can do that.
With that in mind, I want ...to remind them of something. This Memorial day, as we spend time at barbeques, pool parties, or just lying around, we need to remember that since the time of the founding of this great country over 1,000,000 service men and women have died while serving in the military of this country. Those men and women paid the ultimate price so that we could enjoy our safety and freedom. It wasn't the politicians, it was those people from all different political parties and walks of life that decided that what we had was worth fighting for, and if need be, dying for.
So let's do our best to honor their memories, by remembering them on this Memorial Day and by exercising one of the privileges that we take for granite. All of you, regardless of who you are voting for, honor their memory every time you show up at a voting booth.
So whether you argue about the promises of the candidates, just sit back and listen to the circus or try to ignore it all, please remember that people have given their life for your right to have that choice.
Lest we forget.....