Tuesday, June 09, 2009

For us, the living

Lincoln said at Gettysburg "It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated to the unfinished work...that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom.

My oldest daughter, the artist, graduates from High School tonight. As I prepare for her graduation party, and for her to head off to college, I thought it was important to try to tell her about our past, so I have been researching our family's genealogy. I found a man, her Great Grandmother's Grandfather, David Marks Church, who deserves special remembrance. In May of 1864 at the age of 16, David Church joined the 39th Wisconsin infantry. He was mustered out for wounds received from shrapnel in September of 1864. Being not quite 17 and too stubborn to stay a civilian, he joined the 38th Wisconsin infantry in October 1864. In July of 1865 he was again mustered out for wounds, this time as a result of powder burns from battle in Petersburg, Virginia in April 1865.

When he was admitted to the U.S home for disabled volunteer Soldiers in Milwaukee in 1901, he was 5' 2 1/2" tall, yet Private David Church towers over me.

It is for us, the living, rather, to be dedicated to the unfinished work.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

So...about that whole "I'm done deploying" thing...

So, since I have gotten back, I have bounced around a few jobs, finally settling in as a full time Guardsman, happily working as a rear detachment readiness NCO for a deployed unit. I work downstairs from this guy, who got a call telling him that he was going to Afghanistan, and that he needed to call a list of people and tell them the same news. Guess who’s name was on the list. After talking it over with my darling wife, and weighing out all of our options, I decided that going on this mission was the right thing to do. It's an exciting mission, and I am going with good, experienced people. The aspects of the mission that I can share, I will. For now it is enough to say that I am packing my "A" bag and trying to lose a few of the "beer and pizza" pounds I have put on over the last couple years. And learning Pashto.