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Sons and Daughters in the Armed Forces

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Fly Time,

 

I appreciate your kindness in thinking of the troops and wanting to share your passion for fly tying with them. I am pasting in a portion of my reply in another post to suggest a way we can do exactly what you suggested; share fly tying and angling with servicemen and women, but in a slightly different venture.

 

There has been renewed interest in flyfishing and flytying as a therapeutic tools to help men and women that lost arms and legs in combat, most recently in Iraq and Afghanistan. The impetus has been captured in “Project Healing Waters”, a phenomenally story of the dedication of a small group of fly anglers to help returning service men with traumatic injuries or amputation. Fly casting and tying have are being used to help soldiers develop motor function, coordination, and experience the therapeutic benefit of flyfishing we all enjoy.

 

John Colburn spearheads the tying sessions and Ed Nicholson teaches casting and fishing to the veterans. These two gentlemen got things started at Walter Reed and are building a small group of volunteer cadre; they want to see flyfishing therapy expand into the VA system; only by extending the network can these veterans really experience the life-long healing that time on the water (...and at the tying bench) can bring to them. Several of the PHW members, both teachers and wounded warriors, will be at the Federation of Fly Fishing conclave in Bozeman, MT in July. The link below is a story first published in the Billings Gazette that highlights Lt. Eivind Forseth, a “graduate” of the Project Healing Waters classes at Walter Reed. There is also a link to the Project Healing Waters website, if you would like to know more about the program.

 

So, if you know a veteran, take him (or her) flyfishing; your lives will be forever enriched. John Colburn tells it in a very candid manner: regardless of how you may perceive someone’s ability (...or disability...), never tell them they “cannot do it”, only that we have not figured out a way to show them how it is done.

 

http://www.billingsgazette.net/articles/20...fly-fishing.txt

http://www.projecthealingwaters.org/Index.htm

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God bless and God speed to your son A.A. as well as the rest of you that have family in the military. Not to detract from any one branch, from my point of view, the utmost respect goes from me to those guys and gals on the front line. The ones that are going in and out of these building not knowing what is on the other side of the wall waiting for them. I'm lucky; I only have to spend 4 to 6 months away from my family at a time. The Army and the Marines (as well as the Navy) spend a year or more on these tours just to turn around, get ready to come home to their loved ones, and get slapped with another assignment for and extended amount of time longer without coming home. All of our military troops are very precious, and well respected in their own right. The guys on the front line though, that's where my heart goes out to. A friend of my wife. Her hubby was in Korea the same time I was. He had came their after his time (16 months) in Iraq. Spent a year there and was on his way home for a long while. One week prior to his leaving to come home, his whole unit got reassigned back to Iraq for 12 - 16 months longer with no return home in between assignments. During a 4 year time frame, his wife only got to see him one time, for three days, that was when his son was born. Those guys, I don't know how they do it, but they do, and they do it first class. God bless all of our men and women in the profession of arms, and God bless our great country.

 

Ashby

 

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To add in, I am the proud father of Airman Matt Hellman. He is in Miss. trainning in aviation electonics, soon to be going through his second phase in TX. I had the honor to watch him graduate from Bootcamp not too long ago and found it amazing at how squared away the recruits were. I had the pleasure to talk with many other parents/wifes and loved ones who to a person were proud of there sons, daughters, wifes and husbands who were now airmen. Thanks for the idea of tying classes for vets, we have a large VA hospital in my town. I have held fly tying classes in a local orvis shop so quite frankly I am going to check with the Local VA and see what can be worked out.

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My sincere thanks go to all who served and are serving. I was in the 23 service battalion from 84 to 96 and met alot of really good people all doing there jobs selflessly. Tomorrow I go to watch the rememberance day parade with my family to pay tribute to all who have made the ultimate sacrifice and to pray for all those who are going on tour shortly. From Afganistan to Iraq and all other postings. Keep yourselves safe and make us all proud.

 

My Thanks

 

Jon Grant

 

Sgt (ret) 23 Hamilton Service Battalion

Maintenance Company

Arte et Marte (through skill and fighting)

 

Cheers

 

Here's to you guys and girls :cheers: :thumbsup:

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I am always encouraged by the care, concern, and sincere appreciation the forum shows for our servicemen and women. It is genuinely heart-warming for an old soldier to read these posts.

 

It is truly amazing how fast time passes; my oldest son, Andy, finished his tour in Iraq a while back, pinned on some Captain bars, gave us a new grandson, and is now training up for a tour in Afghanistan. The OPTEMPO is amazing for these young folks, and dwell time (time at home station) is fleeting. Having retired from the Army just over a year ago, we still know quite a few soldiers (...and their families) that are deployed. We have lost a few friends; it is the immutable fact of an Army at war. And I have also had the good fortune to share Wyoming water with several returning veterans, listen to their stories, and see the therapeutic value of a well-presented fly.

 

I am forever thankful for their service.

 

Russ

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I am new here. My Good friend George sent me. (Greyghost aka Deadly streamer) My Brother is a Captain in the USNR (O6 Captain, not 03 He got the chickens last year) and he JUST returned Monday from the middle east....somewhere. I am a "liberal" (well, at least in some ways) and not particularly a "war lover" but I am still an American and I am proud of the service that my brother is giving, and that of others who are sacrificing for me and others. I served in the Air Force myself. (yes, my first name IS Seargent! or it WAS at one time!) i hope that we can eventually have ALL our loved ones home safe from the war torn corners of the world! All my support to the folks with armed service personell who are serving with honor, pride and dignity! thanks guys and ladies, you are amazing people and the sacrifice you give is more than some of us deserve! but you give it anyway. I am proud of you and your devotion to your country.

 

Lazybee

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My son heads to basic training next month. It's going to be tougher on him than he thinks, having to leave his wife and 3 kids for probably 4 or 4 1/2 months. He will complete basic training and go into AIT at Lackland AFB right afterwards. He is in the ANG and going into (I think he said) loadmaster school. If not that, it's building pallets and getting them to the flightline to load and inventory control. I can't remember. He's going in as an E-3 and got a nice sign on bonus. He felt he had a tradition to maintain. I was Viet Nam era AF and my dad was WWII Navy. Dad's proud .. but a little leery, too.

 

 

Mike

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I'm proud of everyone who supports thier faimly members who chose to enter the service. Having served 20 years in the Navy, I can say from personal experience that the service is not for everyone. So few are willing to make the sacrifices required to be a service member, but just as hard is what it does for the family at home. Moms, Dads, wives, husbands nor kids signed the papers to enter the service yet thier sacrifices are just as severe. Guys at work wonder how I can work 10-12 hours a day when needed. I reply that I used to go to work in the morning and not come home for seven months. For a wife to tend to the home repairs, illnessess by her self truly makes for a strong woman, especially when her (usually) only source of support is 7,000 miles away. :headbang:

 

On a futher note, this morning this appeared in dear Abbey:

 

DEAR ABBY: Our 17-year-old twin son and daughter met with military recruiters who came to their school and made the military sound exciting and glamorous. They are now saying that after they graduate next year, they want to join the military instead of going to college. They have even put up military posters in their rooms that they received from the recruiters.

 

My husband and I are horrified. We cannot stand the thought of them going off to war, and do not believe that war is the answer to the world's problems. It will be a year, and hopefully the novelty of the idea will wear off by then. However, I don't want to take a chance. How can I counter the idea? -- CLEVELAND MOM

 

DEAR CLEVELAND MOM: Before your children commit themselves to the idea that the military is all foreign travel, shiny medals and glory, they should see firsthand that there is a more serious side. Contact your nearest veterans hospital and inquire about you and your children paying some visits and volunteering to help wounded vets. It may be a sobering

 

I thought her reply was really weak. I normally agree with her but this time I think she missed her opprotunity. Not a word of support for the twins for wanting to honorably serve thier country. I have never read anything from Dear Abbey that evoked political sides but I think that this shows her real colors. :unsure:

 

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oh, that's a great letter from Cleveland. I seem to meet people every day who have no clue as to what honor, respect, devotion, and discipline are.... and most often they are those who never served. (not saying that someone who has never been in uniform is automatically a :poop: , but you know what I mean.)

 

Let's not forget we have a fair contingent of Coasties around too, including a squadron of patrol boats in the Persian Gulf area and a support element in Bahrain, as well as all the great work we're doing stateside, and everywhere else. I'm within a few months of 20 years active duty, and thinking about punching out and getting a real job soon.

 

I thank God every day that most nights I'm able to say "goodnight" to my son and my wife, even if it's only on the phone.

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No sons or daughters (i am only 17 after all) but i just found out tonight that my cousin - a helicopter mechanic - is heading out to Iraq soon, i must admit i am rather concerned :/

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I have been hearing a lot of good stuff in this thread. I spend a half day each week working with veterans of our current conflict helping them readjust to civilian life. It is a hard road for some but I have been down it and I'm running point for these young warriors. All you folks out there keep tuned into to the VA and help hold their feet to the fire so these soldiers and Marines get ALL the care they need.

Grunt

1st Plt. 2nd Squad Alpha Co. 1st Bn. 9th Marines

The Walking Dead

Vietnam 1967

 

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I spend a half day each week working with veterans of our current conflict helping them readjust to civilian life. It is a hard road for some but I have been down it and I'm running point for these young warriors.

...right on target; thank you for taking point.

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My daughter-in-law called two nights ago to tell us that Andy, our son, was wounded in Afghanistan. He was evaced to Germany, has had several surgeries, and will know tomorrow if his foot and lower leg can be saved. Andy is a strong, determined, bear of a man, and has a son of his own. He is undoubtedly looking at a mountain in front of him now that seems higher than any he has ever climbed before.

 

I do not remember when I last held my son’s hand, but would have given anything to do so last night. A selfish wish on my part, but I just wanted him to know he wasn’t alone.

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WyKnot .. you're not alone here either. Good thoughts, prayers and thanks heading your son's way.

 

I just found out that my son will probably be heading off to Iraq in the next couple months. I can see a few sleepless nights heading my way.

 

 

Mike

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