Keeping In Touch
Though things have changed over the last 20 years when it comes to keeping in touch, many people do not realize how important keeping in touch with family is to the deployed military member. Today we have email and Skype and all other ways to keep in touch in an instant but it wasn’t always that way. I remember when I first started flying getting to a computer to email was a special treat. We didn’t have cell phones like they do today. I would have to wait to get to command post or pay $5/ minute to call home from the motel.
There is nothing like hearing from your family every time you get a chance. I remember the looks on peoples faces when we would take care packages to the AOR for the men and women who were there for long deployments. I also remember a time when some would go out with no return date on their orders. These separations make it very hard on the people away from home and letters and emails all help no matter how frequent. It gives the deployed member a sense of security hearing from family back home.
This is especially true during the holidays, no one wants to be away from their homes on the holidays and any contact with family helps in ways you cannot even imagine if you have never been in that situation. It is easy to pick up the phone or jump in the car to see friends and neighbors when you are home but that is not an option when you are deployed half way around the world. Yes there is support from those deployed with you but it is not the same support and comfort one feels from their family.
Good Luck Tokens
I know we all see in the movies about guys who have a letter or picture of a loved on or family back home that they carry with them everywhere. Superstition is a big thing with many people and I do know a lot of men and women who deployed with their “good luck charm” when they left home, I know I did. My son was about 11 or so when the movie Antz came out, he really liked the movie and so did I. On fathers day of 1999 he gave me a little stuffed animal of Z from the movie, it became MY good luck charm.
I put the stuffed animal on my helmet bag and it has never left. That little stuffed animal has seen more of the world than any 10 people I know from back home combined. It has been to 6 continents and over 40 countries, he goes with me everywhere. I still have it on my helmet bag and take it to class with me each week at Rider University. Things from home DO have special meaning to all military members I know.
Letters From Home
This song I can relate to as something similar to me happened when I first got my assignment from basic training. Though it wasn’t in a letter, my dad told me he was proud of me for the first time when I boarded a train for CA at the age of 21. I always new he was but that was the first time he had ever said it to me. I can still see where we were standing when he said it.
Please feel free to leave a reply at the bottom and tell me what you think of any of my blogs. If any military veterans or those currently serving would like to share some of their experiences, I would welcome the sharing of your experiences.
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