Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Family Reunion

HELLO ALL!! I'd like to thank everyone for their support!! I just can't express enough appreciation to the Strader/Posey family for their support this weekend at the reunion!!! THANK YOU!

GOOD JOB MOMMA!! AND THANK YOU DADDY!! Mom for doing such a great job at reading the post and letter. And daddy for working so hard on getting the Certificate printed. Thank you both for everything you've done to pull off something I wanted to do while I was over here. Thank you for being the ones to execute something I dreamed up!! THANK YOU!!

Well, I'm not sure how I want to start this post...I'll go good stuff first. For those who don't know my family reunion was this weekend in WV. I wanted to be there so so bad! BUT, I couldn't. My mom let me know about 2 weeks ago that they didn't have anything to take to the reunion for the family auction. SO, I got busy on an amazing gift set. A flag that would be flown over our base here in Iraq, and be flown in a Medevac Helicopter. The flag would be put in a presentation case. There are two official certificates with it confirm it was properly flown and handled. A DVD of the flag's "adventure" was made, and a teddy bear with "greetings from Iraq" t-shirt. (That's me on the far right in picture) I did the best I could with the little time I had to get it all together, make it happen, and mail it off in time to get there. Unfortunately the box didn't make it. BUT I must say that it was INCREDIBLE to somewhat be there. I called my dad's cell phone around the time I though the auction would start. I also wrote a letter of hello's to be read at the reunion seeing that I couldn't be there. Well, I sat there listening to everything that was happening at the reunion and I listen to my mom as she read the letter. Before she read the letter, she surprised me and read the "Let Us Pray" blog entry. If you're new to reading this, it's in June, check it out. Well, she struggled through the prayer and I did too...they couldn't hear me, but I was choking up too. And the applause they gave when she was done was difficult as well. Then she started reading the letter I wrote to everyone. It had a couple difficult parts to hear as well...it's hard for a man to admit, but I get emotional sometimes too...I just can't explain how bad I wanted to be there and how awsome it was that I was able to sit over here and listen to what was happening over there. When the letter was finished, another applause...it was GREAT!! So a little while later I think mom called me and I listened to the auction...WOW!! I just can't express how amazing it was!! Thank you Neil!!! You're awsome!! And I can't forget to express the thanks to those in the family that served our Country before I did! Thank you for your service! I could probably just sit here and write and write and write about how cool, awsome, great, and touching that last night was. As I sat here listening to the different things that were taking place at the reunion, I was almost there...almost there. I could almost smell the home cooked food and the chlorine of the swimming pool...almost there....

I don't know how to put the next part...I almost want to leave this post as a good one...but in order to express the full realm of what happens over here...you have to understand that we do our best to forget the bad things that happened a few hours before and focus on the good things that are going on. Yesterday...lives changed. Somehow...it makes it easier when this happens opposed to when that happens. I can't say what "this" or "that" is...but when 'that' happens, it's horrible...it sucks...but when 'this' happens, it's somehow not so bad. Or maybe it was just the original shock....and now that a little time has passed, and when I thought about it earlier today, it hurt a little more. Who's to say that one person's life isn't as important as another's? Why do we just assume that? Why don't we take....I can't say anymore. I guess I'll have to give this some time and think about how I can say what's in my head without really saying it....at least for now. Kiss your children goodnight. Kiss your loved one goodnight. Tell them you love them. If there's someone you haven't said "I love you" to in a while...maybe you should now. It can all be gone in a blink of an eye. Gone. Just like that. Take nothing for granted. Be glad you live in the United States. Be proud to be an American.

I love you all and thank you once again!!

OH, and we beat the record for the most posts in one month. I know it's kinda cheating but the "Realities of War" was finished about 1:30 am my time 1 Aug. But my computer is still on US time so I guess it posted US time...or maybe it has to do with the website location...whatever, we still beat the 14 post record.

LOVE YOU!!!

Somewhere in Iraq
SGT Wormy STRADER


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1 comment:

MOM said...

comment ......... hmm ...
Well it was GREAT to have Jeremy at the reunion even if it had to be by phone. Reading both items was tuff and I tried to get ready for it so I would not tear up but it did not work.... but I was not the only one with their eyes leaking...
Jeremy came through with "Stars and Stripes" and it was great. The package was on the front porch when I got home and it brought back more weekend memories .... and I also would like to thank Neil.
From one PROUD MOM