This a photo from our local newspaper, the Chico Enterprise-Record, of my husband and me practicing push-ups at the gym to get ready for October's Boot Camp Challenge at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot. (We entered as a team member of Marine Parents.com and raised money for their Care Package Project). As you can see, on my right wrist is a Memorial Bracelet that I have worn constantly for the past three years. I wear a customized one that honors the memory of six members of my son's platoon, the 3rd Platoon, of the 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines, Fox Company who were killed on Labor Day 2004 in Fallujah, when a suicide bomber crashed into the first vehicle in the convoy. My son nearly always rode in the first vehicle, but on that day was assigned to the second vehicle and consequently was next on the scene, though he himself was spared. That tragedy affected me deeply; I grieved terribly for months. Then I happened to come across the website for memorialbracelets.com and, at first, just bought one bracelet for my son to wear with his best friend's name on it. But the more I thought about it, the more I felt the need to have one too. I had found that I thought many, many times a day of that tragedy: of the loss of those Marines, of the families' pain, and of the pain my son must bear to have seen his friends' remains in such a gruesome state. The bracelet has actually helped me heal; It has helped me move through my grief better and has given me a objective way to continue to honor those young men, whom I will always carry in my heart.
Nanette and Mario