Monday, February 21, 2011

Mosaic Monday

Children Of War
I have always believed that no matter what the war is called or on what shore the war is waged, the children are the ones that ultimately pay the price. Among the numerous news articles that were tucked inside the pages of the Viet Nam Cease Fire scrapbook that I have been sharing with you were these. I won't add a lot of wordy comments and thoughts to the pictures. Just the captions that were below them. They pretty much speak for themselves.

Near Michelin Plantation, these two children struggle with a large sack as they flee a battle. 

Four children on a highway near Pleiku back-pack their possessions and head for a refugee camp.

A young girl rocks her baby sister in a hammock at Long Thanh, which was destroyed during a firefight.

At Bu Chi, which was destroyed in fighting, a bicycle wheel is all that this tot has to remember his father.
It's a happy and a little bit uncomfortable moment for Maj. Hayden J. Lockhart Jr. as he meets for the first time, his 7 year old son, Jamie, at Travis Air Force Base.
You are probably wondering why I added this last picture with the first four. The first years of a child's life are the years when those lasting child/parent bonds form. I can only imagine the struggle that this father and son had building those bonds after 7 years.

Wouldn't it be nice if mankind would find another way to settle their differences? Just saying!

Why not join me at at the Little Red House to visit some more mosaic presentations. Have a Blessed Day!

Saturday, February 19, 2011

The First And The Last

Other than the families of these two brave Americans, I wonder how many people know the names of the first and the last Americans to die in Viet Nam.

The first American to die was Spec. 4 Tom Davis of Livingston, Tenn. He was killed December 22, 1961 near Duc Hoa while serving as an adviser.

The last American to die was Lt. Col. William Nolde of Mount Pleasant, Mich. He was killed at An Loc during an artillery barrage 11 hours before the cease fire.

Joyce Nolde, lays a rose on the casket of her husband in Arlington National Cemetery in Washington. Taps sound as Lt. Col. William Nolde is laid to rest. Left behind was his wife Joyce and his five children ranging in age from 12 to 19.

"I will remember the names of these men for the rest of my life."
That was my thought as I read this small article in the Honolulu Advertiser giving tribute to the first and the last Americans to die in Viet Nam while serving our country.

The troops came home, the POWs were released and many of the MIAs remained missing. Life returned to normal and I eventually didn't remember their names.

There was something that I never forgot though. It was the great sacrifice that was made by these two men and the countless brave Americans who died between the first and the last casualties of the war in Viet Nam.

Viet Nam touched everyone's lives in some way. How could it not, when every evening it was right there being played out over and over again in our living rooms on the news. As tragic as it was it was happening to other people and I was just sort of a witness to history. 

The day came though, that Viet Nam got right in my face and became up close and personal to me. I was shopping that day and the store that I was in was playing the local radio station over the loud speakers. At that time the D. J.s at the radio stations read a daily updated list of the names of local men and women that had died in Viet Nam. I heard the name Dean Pope come out of those speakers and hang there in the air. My heart fell to my feet. Dean was a friend and the husband of one of my best friends. He had received his orders shortly after their wedding day. Before leaving though, Dean and Liz had enough time to conceive a baby resulting in a beautiful baby boy that was born while Dean was fighting in Viet Nam. He didn't have much time left on his tour of duty when his life was taken. Never would he hold his son in his arms. Never would he be there beside Liz to help her raise their son. 

There were many stories like this that played out across this country every single day that the War in Viet Nam waged on.. 

Where were you when Viet Nam first became personal for you? 

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pieces Of The Past

Last weekend Theresa brought a large scrapbook to me that I had given to her quite a few years ago. She is now in the process of moving and needed a safe place for it until she gets settled into her new home. This scrapbook is the keeper of memories from major events in our lifetime.

Among those memories can be found newspaper articles all about the release of the POW's following the end of the Viet Nam war. We were living at MCAS Kaneohe Bay, Oahu, Hawaii at the time and I was obsessed with collecting anything I could find concerning the POWs. Other news of major events that were tucked inside that scrapbook was the shooting of President Reagan, The release of the 52 American hostages after being held in Iran for 444 days and the tragic loss of the astronauts aboard the space shuttle Challenger.

Look what else I found safely stored within the pages of this wonderful book of memories! A photo of President and Mrs Nixon and their daughter and son-in-law. We were living at MCAS El Toro, California at the time of his stop over at the base and was fortunate enough to capture this historical moment on film. Although MCAS El Toro has since been closed and no longer exist, it did have it's moments in the lime light.

Is there anyone among us that doesn't recall this great moment? I remember being glued to the television when they broadcast this wonderful unselfish effort. I remember being so touched by the song and these gifted performers that tears streamed down my face. 

In the days and weeks to follow, I will be sharing the contents of some of these news articles and memories of my thoughts and feelings at the time they occurred. Until next time, may the blessings of Peace, Love and Happiness rain down on you.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Share The Joy Thursday

This week has been one of those rare ones that is not packed full of doctors appointments and any number of errands to run. Meaning plain and simply {{WE}} time for J.D. and I. Having put a few things on hold for a while, we decided that we would take care of some of those things on Tuesday. I am thinking that it would be difficult for the average urban dweller to grasp the fact that when you live in the country in the Midwest and you say you are 'going to town', it is still a country experience.  

 Our trip to town included a trip to the post office to place a couple of packages in the mail. I seldom go to the post office any more since they now sell postage stamps at the grocery stores. For whatever strange reason that is a part of me, I have always enjoyed going to the post office. It rates right up the with book stores, art supply shops and and office supply stores, where I am concerned. These places are a treat to my senses. So I was looking forward to the trip to our little Post Office. 

As I took my place in line at the Post Office I was in a good mood because we had already taken care of two things that we had put off for quite a while. 

That good mood turned to plain and simple JOY! when from the far reaches of our little post office I heard the morning song of a rooster....... !!! Now I am no stranger to going to the post office in the spring and hearing the sounds of little biddies coming from the back of the post office, but this was a first for me. I have never heard a rooster's song coming from the back room. This was early afternoon so his clock was off by quite a few hours. It just reaffirmed for me that spring is right around the corner, bringing a smile to my face and lifting my soul from a good mood to pure JOY!

What brought you JOY! this week? 
Come Share The JOY!

Have a BLESSED and JOYFUL week!