Pumpkins in Rows… for our Heroes and She-Roes

Dear Reader:

Today is Veterans Day…as much an annual part of fall as Halloween and Thanksgiving.  Actually if you stop and think about it… many veterans have experienced their spookiest and/or deadliest encounters from their tours of combat duty and for their valor and courage we are most thankful!

We do have heroes and she-roes from every conflict around the world. In fact today…one out of every ten veterans is a woman…a daughter, granddaughter, mother, aunt, or even grandmother. Yes…you heard me right…even grandmothers!

*(“Your grandmother wears combat boots” ) is quite plausible in 2019. 🙂

Head lines, like this one below, are seen more and more in the local hometown  papers now….

*Grandmother  returns from Syria in her first deployment in the National Guard

………………………………………………………………………………………………………

There is always so much nostalgia surrounding Veterans Day…a mixture of sadness but happiness too…here are some of my favorite photos/stories.

Alison Ferrell’s “something blue” at her May 13 wedding in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, was her 92-year-old uncle, Bill Lee Eblen, who wore his Marine dress blues.

“From the moment I got engaged I knew I wanted to include my uncle Bill in a special way,” Ferrell, 30, told ABC News “I come from a family where we were taught to have the utmost respect and admiration for the armed services and honoring him as the ‘something blue’ just seemed like the natural choice.”

This next photo story definitely brought  bittersweet tears to me.

Britt Harris’ husband, Chris Harris, died while deployed with the U.S. Army in Afghanistan just one week after his wife told him she was expecting their first child. In order to keep Chris Harris’s fellow soldiers close to their child, she decided to let them be the first to reveal the gender.

The soldiers filmed themselves opening the poppers in Afghanistan in front of an American flag.

A Surprise Tea Party for Dad

This military father had a very magical tea party with his 4-year-old daughter, Ashley, and the special moment was captured on camera. His wife commented: “He was hesitant at first but after a little talking I was able to convince him. Like fathers all over the world he would do anything for his daughter.”

In my family I want to remember today my father (Curtis Barbour) a sergeant in the Army Air Corp, who saw action on D-Day and returned with 6 bronze stars and the distinguished unit badge. My brother, Ben, who was wounded and returned from Vietnam with two purple hearts. A few years ago he wrote Grace Under Fire about his harrowing and spiritual experiences in Vietnam.

The author is a combat veteran of the Vietnam War where he served as a front-line rifleman and a machine gunner as a member of the United States Marine Corps. This is his story of several divine interventions that took place during his thirteen months of service in South Vietnam in the late 1960’s. It is also the beginning of his tale of the aftermath upon his return to the home front and his forty plus years battle with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Don’t forget today to thank a veteran for his or her service…and for their sacrifices for us. A call, text, email, note, or visit can make a veteran’s day. My brother Ben and I talked yesterday and I thanked him for his time in service and his years of struggling to overcome PTSD –  painful memories from Vietnam. Many living veterans continue to carry a heavy burden for the rest of their lives.

So until tomorrow…

Oliver Wendell Holmes

Veteran's Day Quotes

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Join me in wishing Mandy’s art students good luck in their entry in the James Island Festival of Lights…a lot of hard work went into their art exhibit. Fingers crossed and prayers abound Mandy! The theme is Magical Memories at Christmas…and what is more magical than ‘the visions of sugarplums dancing in childrens’ heads.’ Candy…from around the world!

  • I love that the students “snuck” a red gum drop in Santa’s mouth…everyone needs a little snack for the journey ahead. 🙂

 

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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