So Many Unsung Heroes in the MIlitary That we Need to Honor

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I wasn’t able to post on Friday. I had surgery on that day. It was to replace a battery in my defibrillator. Still slowly recovering today.

I can see you weren’t too excited about my post last Wednesday. It was a report about sexual harassment and rape. Sorry if it offended you, but we have to face it and follow through in helping those afflicted.

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Times are not exactly fun right now. Our country is in turmoil. Lots of verbal fighting. Seems there a division right down the middle of our country as to beliefs.

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There are many reports of heroic feats by the military. That tells me that people in the military are special people. Here is a story about another hero:

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Marine awarded for saving drowning couple from rough waters in California.

When Cpl. Jordan Perez heard a couple calling for help, he ripped off his boots and sprang into action. The Marine saw two civilian kayakers, their vessel capsized in the waters of 21 Area Boat Basin, a training section for amphibious vehicles at Camp Pendleton, California that opens up onto the Pacific Ocean.

It was around 1 p.m. on Feb. 15, and large, sharp boulders in the basin had caused strong waves that flipped the kayak, leaving the kayakers struggling in the water.

“That’s when I took action,” said Perez in a recent press release. A combat engineer with 7th Engineer Support Battalion, 1st Marine Logistics Group, Perez was working at a nearby construction project when another Marine noticed the drowning couple. “I took my boots off and just started swimming.”

The Marine swam 250 meters through the choppy waves to reach the kayakers. He grabbed the woman’s hand, pulled her back on the kayak and started pushing the boat back to the rocks. The woman’s husband could swim, but he started panicking halfway to the shore. Perez swam back to the man, put a life jacket on him, and continued pushing the woman to safety.

Perez was in the right spot at the right time: while other Marines also noticed the drowning couple, he happened to be training with a retired reconnaissance Marine to prepare for assessment and selection with the Marine Raiders. Part of that training includes swimming two hours every day.

“That [training] takes away any hesitation that comes with putting your own life at risk,” Perez said. “Since I had been training, I was confident that I could get myself out there and get those people back.”

Perez was awarded a challenge coin from Brig. Gen. Dan Conley, the commanding general of Marine Corps Installations West, Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, on Feb. 19th. Though Perez technically does not fall under Conley’s command, the general wanted to personally thank him for what he did. A challenge coin is presented to Marines who go above and beyond, and any further awards will be processed by his chain of command, the press release explained.

“I’d like to believe a lot of people would do what you did, but I know they wouldn’t,” Conley told him. “So, to hear it actually happen is just amazing. That was really gutsy of you.”

But it’s just par for the Corps, as far as Perez is concerned.

“It’s what Marines are expected to do,” he said.

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His instinct saved lives, and left yet another reminder how special our military is.

Do you have a story about a hero? Share it in the comments below. I would love to post it.

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Time to talk about you. How are you doing? Is everything going in the right direction, or has your path been altered?

You are not alone. There are over 11,550 fellow veterans here who have your back.

Of course if your struggling is too hard for you right now, GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number to cal 24/7 There are highly qualified counselors to to help you. They will not hang up until they know you are OK.

Never take on this crazy world alone!

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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Not All Heroes are on the Front Lines. A Marine Saved a Life in California

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My last post a shared some sad stories about heroes who gave their all in WWII. Today I am wanting to share a more uplifting story about a hero that wasn’t on the front lines.

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A Marine’s quick thinking meant the difference between life and death for a motorist on an isolated desert road in California last year.

Capt. Stephen Alexander, the executive officer for the Marines’ recruiting station in Dallas, was driving through Elora, California on his way to the Marine Corps ball to celebrate the service’s 245th birthday when a vehicle going the other way lost control and flipped onto its side.

“Once the vehicle came to a final stop, I pulled over immediately,” Alexander said in a press release. The Marine was awarded a Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal in a ceremony in Texas on Dec. 11.

“There was a vehicle in front of me that also pulled over with [3rd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment] Marines,” said Alexander, who at the time of the incident was a first lieutenant with 3/4 stationed in California. “I’d never met them before; they were from a different company. We all ran over to the vehicle; at this point the vehicle was on its side and the driver was at the bottom and not coherent.”

The driver was unconscious and critically injured, and the Marines could not open any of the car doors due to the vehicle damage from the crash. Undeterred, one Marine broke through the back window while Alexander smashed through the windshield so that he could start applying trauma care.

“Once they smashed in the window I hopped in and started treating as many injuries as I could find,” Alexander said. “Every once and a while the driver would come back to consciousness and say he couldn’t breathe.”

There was no cell service in that part of the desert, and the nearest ranger station was about an hour away. The Marines would have to make do until help arrived. Alexander found that the driver’s leg was partially severed, so he used belts as tourniquets to stop the bleeding before another Marine provided an actual tourniquet.

“We came to Vegas with our dress blues, not tourniquets or our emergency field kits,” Alexander said. “Had the other Marines not been there, there’s no way I could have acquired the things needed to treat him. I would have tried my best, but there’s not a whole lot I could have done once I got in the vehicle had they not continued to provide whatever resources they could find.”

After about an hour, park rangers arrived, followed by a nurse who took over treatment for the driver. The nurse found that the driver also had a punctured lung which was causing his shortness in breath. After about two hours, a helicopter arrived to take the driver, but it couldn’t find a place to land. Luckily, an ambulance came by, at about the same time and Alexander moved the driver into it so he could get to a hospital.

A former infantry officer, Alexander had been trained for this sort of situation. But in the end, he said no amount of training can fully prepare you for the real thing.

“I think reacting to something like that, you either do or you don’t,” said Alexander. “There’s no Marines Hymn playing in the background as you run across the road; you just do something.”

Alexander himself suffered a traumatic brain injury which could have killed him just four months prior to the car accident. He never expected he would wind up treating a driver suffering the same injuries, he said in the release. Though he never found out what happened to the driver, the quick actions of Alexander and the other Marines deserve praise.

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There are many of these kind of stories I will be sharing in the future. But, my next post will be all about my new book, Signs of Hope for the Military: In an Out of the Trenches of Life.”

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How are you doing my friend? The rush of Christmas and the pandemic that doesn’t allows us to see family, and it can pull us down like a huge magnate.

Hope everything is going great for you, but if it isn’t, remember over 10,370 fellow veterans follow this site, and they all have your back.

However, if it is getting too overwhelming, GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7. They have highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will not hang up until they know you are OK.

Don’t take on anything alone in this not so friendly world.

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

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+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it.

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The Great Generation Gave Their All so we Could Have Freedoms

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One thing we need tor remember is the sacrifice that our brothers and sisters had during WWII.

Here are two stories that are tragic, and we should be so thankful for their sacrifices.

  1. The Tester Brothers, New Victory, Tennessee.

What the Tester family enjoyed more than anything else was making music. On the front porch of their two story clapboard home- what became to be known as “the Old Home Place.” – Millard and Eliza Tester, along with their seven boys an two girls, would assemble a variety of fiddlers, banjos, and other instruments and play the music they learned growing up in the hills and valleys of Northeast Tennessee.

In December of 1943, a note arrived at the Old Home Place, informing the family that a telegram awaited them at the post office in near by Telford. It was Carroll Tester, the youngest of the siblings, and the only one still living at home, that had to go and get the telegram.

She brought the telegram to her mother who had just lost her husband to cancer the year before.

Three times Carroll made the trip to get telegrams, bringing back the sad news that another one of her older brothers had been killed in the war.

The last telegram arrived in January of 1945, and that was the day that music died. Carroll remembered the instruments in the closet that were the banjos, fiddles, and guitars were. They were never strummed again or played again. The memories were too painful of a time and a group of great brothers gone by.

2. The Preddy Brothers, Greensboro, NC.

“Are you sure the skinny kid can fly?” asked Col. John. C. Meyer when he saw the new pilot who had just arrived to join his 32nd Fighter Group in England. The skinny little kid was George E. Preddy, from Greensboro, N.C., and he certainly could fly. George went on to become one of the top P-15 fighter aces of WWII.

George’s younger brother, Bill, also became a decorated P-51 pilot, and both were killed by ground fire. George by friendly fire during the Battle of the Bulge, and Bill while strafing and enemy airfield in Czechoslovakia. in April 1945.

The greatest generation gave their all. They fought. They died, but because of them we are a free nation. NEVER FORGET!!

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I am very proud to say I am a veteran. I am sure you are too. We should never be ashamed of our service, no matter when we did it. You didn’t have to earn medals to be a hero. You were a hero the moment you took the oath.

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What’s up? How are you doing? The holiday rush is in full swing right now. It is hard to keep up with the rat race. All of this hustle and bustle can cause anyone to feel drug down like a magnate.

If you are feeling this way. Not to worry my friend. There are over 10,350 fellow veterans here who have you back.

If it is too much for you right now, GET HELP!

Here is a toll free number to call 24/7. There are highly qualified counselors there to help you. They will never hang up on you until they know you are OK.

Do not take on this unfriendly world alone!!

1-800-273-8255 Option # 1

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Remember:

You are never alone.

You are never forsaken.

You are never unloved.

And above all…never, ever, give up!

________________________________________

+If you like what you see, please subscribe at the top of this page where it says, “subscribe.” When you do, all future posts will come directly to your inbox. Also, if you know some else who could benefit for the site, please let them know about it.