Have You Hugged a Veteran Today?

I have! But that is because I am married to one. I must say that before I met Gary, I didn’t really give it much of a thought…thanking, much less hugging, a veteran. A lot of people who know Gary know that he was in the Army as a wee lad. Not many know that he is a Gulf War Veteran. Gary enlisted in the Army straight out of high school and served for 2 years (which is all his dad would sign off on as Gary was 17 at the time). Gary trained on tanks; he started as a driver, moved up to loader and then gunner. In 1991, he was just a few weeks shy of discharge when he was called down to the Gulf, where he stayed for several months. He was a part of the ground war, Operation Desert Storm. I was just a senior in high school at that time, and had no idea who Gary was.  But I remember the yellow ribbons showing support as well as people  protesting the war. And I remember spending countless hours in front of the TV, glued to CNN for the latest updates. Who knew that at some point, my path would cross with one of those soldiers, the man who would become my husband and father of my two beautiful children.

Like I said, I didn’t know Gary at that point in his life. But I have a few pictures from the Army days, which I am going to share with you because I just love them. I apologize for the quality as I am pretty much inept with the scanner.

Army pic 1_edited-1

OMG how handsome is he?!?! Aside from pictures, I have never seen Gary without facial hair. And I can probably count on one hand the number of times I have seen him in a suit.

And I love this one, too:

Army pic 3

That is Gary popping his head out from inside his tank. He gave me this photo when we started dating 12 years ago. That smile still makes me weak in the knees (yes boyfriend, you still have that effect on me).

I started this blog for 2 reasons. First, I wanted to be able to share the photographs that I am taking with my family and friends. And second, I have found that writing is a cheap and highly effective form of therapy for me. One reason I did NOT start this blog was so that I could use it as a soap box. Here you will not find my opinion on controversial issues like politics, religion or whether or not the right person won American Idol. Because, gosh darn it, my blog is a happy place!!! 

So with that in mind, I urge you to have a great Memorial Day weekend. Have fun, be safe, and hug a veteran!


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