Sunday, August 24, 2008

For our Daughter Who Received a Naval ROTC Scholarship

I purchased the customized bracelet for our daughter who has just begun college on a Naval ROTC scholarship. She hopes to become a Naval Aviator and fly fighter jets just as Capt. Michael S. Speicher did.

Our daughter was not even two months old when the Gulf War began in 1991. We watched the television accounts on CNN while holding, feeding, and rocking her to sleep. We did not know on that first night of the war, in the midst of dozens of successful sorties by the Navy, that then LCDR Speicher had been lost. We did not know that night that our infant daughter would one day feel called to serve our country in the Navy.

My hope is that wearing this bracelet will serve several purposes. When she grows weary of her studies, may it help her to restore her strength. If she gets distracted, that it direct her focus back toward her goal. I hope that it will keep foremost in her mind her wellspring of respect and admiration for those who have served before her and that she honor their sacrifices by pursuing this path with courage and commitment. I hope it provides inspiration to her and her fellow midshipmen and remind them that their mere willingness to serve is one of the most powerful deterrents against our enemies' efforts to destroy our great country. May it be a reminder that we never leave any one of our soldiers, sailors or marines behind and to spare no effort or resource to bring them back home. And, may it remind her to say the occasional prayer to God to send comfort to the family of Capt. Speicher.

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