Friday, November 11, 2005

For My Brother Who Died From Effects Of Agent Orange

Words can not express how I feel about our brave men and women who are fighting for our country. I was 10 yrs old in '67, but do remember so much from that time. My brother-in-law died in '03, due to effects of agent orange, while serving in Vietnam. I have been trying very hard to have his discharge changed from "other than honorable" and to have his medals sent to us, but keep hitting a brick wall. Joe was a Corporal in the Marines. After his death, we found letters he had written to his mother stating how scared he and his buddies were and afraid that he would not make it out. Like so many of our brave young men at that time, Joe was not a fighter, but knew he had to do his duty to protect our country. He received his "Other than honorable" discharge because he forged someone's name on leave papers and made long distance calls. When I read these charges, I was flabbergasted that he would receive such a harsh penalty. I know there are many more stories like Joe's. I am an ex-navy wife and I saw some pretty serious crimes going on in '74-'75. Seeing what I did and knowing that these crimes received a slap on the hand, it really makes me so angry that Joe received a harsh discharge while fighting, the others that in the nave were in non-combat. Go figure.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

We Honor Him By Wearing This Bracelet

The 11th ACR had not been deployed since Vietnam in the 60s. It was a big deal to be deployed from the NTC which concentrates strictly on training units on todays urban warfare scenarios. Now we were put to the test. Unfortunately on 24 May 2005, we lost a great soldier and friend, SFC Randy Collins. I remember seeing him at dinner, then shortly after our FOB was attacked by mortars. He unfortanetly was hit and did not make it. So we honored him by wearing this bracelet. To show that we care and miss him.