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Thank a Veteran each and every day

Monday, January 31, 2011

RWW Nashville January 29, 2011

I just returned from my 2nd RWW dinner which was held this weekend in Nashville. I'll only mention this once----it was in the 60's!!!

Well, I believe each Program has it's own uniqueness. The program was somewhat the same as the one held in Milwaukee this past June. It was nice seeing old faces and meeting new ones. I got to meet Allen Clark. His wife, Linda, came up to me to thank us and offered me a copy of his book. I started reading it at the airport and on the way home: "Wounded Soldier Healing Warrior"...didn't take long to bring tears to my eyes.

I got more out of the POW MIA ceremony. It's in the program where a table is set where each item on the table has significance. Actually, HMC Matthew Riley told me where I could get all the symbolism. It goes like this: "You may notice this small table here in a place of honor. It is set for one. This table is our way of symbolizing that members of our profession of arms are missing from our midst. They are commonly call P.O.W.'s or M.I.A.'s, we call them brothers.

They are unable to be with us this evening and so we remember them.

This table set for one is small... it symbolizes the frailty of one prisoner against his oppressors.

The table cloth is white... it symbolizes the purity of their intentions to respond to their country's call to arms.

The single rose displayed in a vase reminds us of the families and loved ones of our comrades in arms who keep faith awaiting their return.

The red ribbon tied so prominently on the vase is reminiscent of the red ribbon worn on the lapel and breasts of thousands who bear witness to their unyielding determination to demand a proper accounting for our missing.

A slice of lemon is on the bread plate... to remind us of their bitter fate.

There is salt upon the bread plate... symbolic of the family's tears as they wait.

The glass is inverted... they cannot toast with us tonight.

The chair is empty... they are not here.

The "wrapping" ceremony was as awesome as ever. You know, it was the best quilt show seeing all the beautiful "colors" wrapped around these warriors.

I will pass on to you some of the many thank yous, and hugs that I received. I tell you, I wish you could all experience this....pretty awesome! "be sure to thank all those involved for my quilt", "I've never had anyone do something like this for me", "this means more to me than you can imagine".

Some came up to me asking how they can thank the people who made their quilt. It was pointed out to them how they can reach us thru this blog....I sure hope we hear from some of them leaving comments right here.

I will be posting pictures taken at the ceremony ...but first I must pack for tomorrow's scheduled QOV sew-in...ohhh, please let the weather cooperate.
As I remember things, I'll add right here. I couldn't believe the multiple deployments some of them families went thru. There was, I believe one who had 6 deployments!! Amazing we have such dedicated volunteers who are serving our country.


Vixanna said...

Rita you are a really inspiration to all of us. You lead by example and we are all truly blessed with what you do and what you share with us. I have had the privilege of seeing the "missing Man" display at our local museum and it brings tears to your eyes. I am so blessed to be able to say that I quilt for Land of Lincoln Quilts of Valor. Ladies stand tall and be proud of what you do for our military. I am AF mom and I know how much these quilts mean and they speak volumes about our love for our military personnel. God bless every quilter and every piecers. You are, in my book, the best in the world - You are Land of Lincoln Quilts of Valor.

Rita P said...

Well thank you, but if you're getting inspiration from me, I get it from the rest of you. We had ladies show up for the sew-in yesterday!! If they didn't finish their project at the sew-in, they take them home with them to finish. I came home with over 10 tops needing backings to be ready for quilting (and I think I'll take this snow day to make up the backings for those). These are tops finished at home. Karen took 9 tops to bind at home. Others came in and took a couple home to bind or came to pick up a kit. No, I don't do it alone, that's for sure and I emphasize that!


Jessica said...

My name is Jessica Simmons, and I met you at the RWW in Nashville, TN. My husband has been on a total of 5 deployments and this was his as well as my first RWW. I do believe that for me the quilts were the best part of the Banquet of Honor Dinner. We had no idea that there really truly are people out there who still care deeply enough about soldiers such as my husband that they would take the time out of their busy lives to do something like that for us. It is very much appreciated. My grandmother is a quilter so believe me I know how long it takes to complete just one quilt. And as I looked around the room that night I knew that it took a serious amount of dedication to complete that many quilts by a deadline. We have a 7 month old son who will be told about everything his Father as done. He will also be told that there are very decent people left in this world who do these types of things for our family, even though they don't have to. Our quilt was made by Ms. Edith Hubbard of Batavia, IL. We would like to send a very special thanks to her. Thank you Ms. Edith for taking time out of your life to do something very nice for someone you don't even know. We are very, very grateful for our quilt, and what it stands for.
EO1 Petty Officer,
Casey Simmons
Jessica Simmons (wife)
& Kaigan Simmons (7 month old son)

Caron Carlson said...

Jessica, 5 deployments and I'd estimate making one quilt takes a month- (cutting, piecing the quilt top and then onto a machine quilter (in this case Edith)and then back to us for binding and label)-1 month compared to your 5 years (if not more). Thank you for your kind words and thank you, thank you for YOUR service.

God Bless you!