Wherever you may be celebrating Christmas this year, whether near or far from home, remember that the Christmas spirit is carried in the heart. Wishing you and yours a joyous and beautiful day!
Help save the lives of some military working dogs.
Sign the petition at the bottom of this post. It costs nothing and only requires your name and email address.
Military working dogs are highly trained canines who go to war to help do very dangerous work. Dogs have fought alongside American forces in every conflict since the Revolutionary War (but only officially since WWII). The particular dogs in danger of having their lives taken, worked with UK forces on the battlefield.
According to an article in The Sun, two Army dogs who helped save thousands of lives while on duty in Afghanistan will be put down next week, because Top Brass say they can’t be re-homed. This is despite having trained, military dog handlers who are willing and able to take them in and provide a home for them.
Not only would I be grateful if you’d take a moment to sign this petition to save these dogs, I’d be delighted if you’d pass it on to others. Let’s see if we can help!
Add your support at change.org/saveveterandogs
Good morning America! It’s Veterans Day which makes it the perfect time to reflect on the fact that the bounty we enjoy in the United States has been won, protected and defended by a few willing, dedicated and selfless citizens for the benefit of all the rest of us. My wish this November 11th, is that our veterans feel the love, respect and admiration we have for them, today and every other day of the year.
Today is the 73rd anniversary of D-Day. It’s the day when American, Canadian and British forces made the largest amphibious assault in history on several heavily fortified beaches in Normandy (Utah, Omaha, Juno, Gold, Sword) in order to fight Nazi Germany and gain a foothold in Continental Europe. More than 5,000 ships and 13,000 aircraft were on hand to support the invasion.
General George S. Patton, Jr addressed his troops as they were preparing for battle on June 5th, 1944. He said
“There is one great thing that you men will all be able to say after this war is over and you are home once again. You may be thankful that twenty years from now when you are sitting by the fireplace with your grandson on your knee and he asks you what you did in the great World War II, you won’t have to cough, shift him to the other knee and say, ‘Well your Granddaddy shoveled shit in Louisiana.'”
Nothing comes without a cost. During the invasion many of the Allied ground forces were either killed, wounded or went missing following the landings and there were many additional deaths among the Allied air forces.
It’s good for us to remember them always but particularly on this day…
Santa’s Helper is busy delivering Christmas love. There’s a little something special in my bag for all our troops, whether deployed or at home, our veterans…and of course our civilian American patriots. God bless you and yours!
“Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
of sun-split clouds, — and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of — wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,
I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air….”
Pilot Officer John Gillespie Magee, Jr.
*I will be out of town on Friday, and I may or may not have internet service so here’s the Celebration Of Service Friday post, just a little early.
I’ve whispered in Santa’s ear and asked him to bring you a safe and happy Christmas season whether you’re home or serving abroad. Know that your countrymen are including you in their prayers on Christmas and every other day of the year. We think about you, we appreciate you and we are ever grateful for all your hard work. God bless you and yours!
When I was a child, we used to drive by the rows and rows of white headstones that cover the landscape at the Golden Gate National Cemetery. Even when I was very young, the sight gave me pause. I don’t remember now, if I prayed for those buried there but I know I thought about them long after the headstones were tiny specks in the distance. I always wanted to visit, I wanted to walk up and down the rows and read the inscriptions on the stones. I asked to stop many times but my parents didn’t take my requests seriously and I never got the chance. I surmise they thought it would be upsetting to me but I never felt that way. I simply wanted to walk there, to feel the atmosphere, to think inside the quiet blanket that surrounded the place. In my own way, I wanted to “talk” to the men who were buried there.
These days I think a lot about those who served and who are currently serving. I think about our fallen and I pray for them and the families/friends they leave behind. I think about how to conduct myself to best honor their service, their sacrifice and to show my gratitude in a concrete way.
On March 2nd 2012, I wrote the following
“This very day, this very hour someone is engaged in a life or death struggle on your behalf. Do not forget to be grateful and by extension show that gratitude by living so that your life is worth the price paid to protect it.”
That’s what I try to do each and every day. I try to make good use of the time I have. That’s because each day I’m given to do my work here is a gift paid for by somebody else.
Enjoy your time, hug your friends, hold your family close…be kind to each other…