One of privileges that I have doing this job is overseeing the Remember Our Troops list that we regularly print. I received a letter recently from one of the mothers of a troop on our list. She said that her son is currently serving in Iraq and he has many friends and family members in the Cherokee County area as he grew up on a farm just outside of Quimby.
"Although many think we are ending duties in Iraq" she went on to say, "It is a very volatile place for our service people. Two weeks ago, one of my son's closest 'buddies' was horribly hurt and the K-9 dog killed. By the grace of God, my son and his dog had moved to the rear of the house, sniffing for bombs, when it exploded. Please ask your readers to continue to pray and care for all in harm's way, as well as those now suffering horrible disfigurements and other wounds. Thank You." she added.
With the Holidays fast approaching I would encourage everyone to remember our troops. It's been along time since many of them have enjoyed the Holidays with their families. The best thing we could do is to let them know that we are with them and care for them. Even a letter can be a positive influence during their day.
Also, I ask that the families please kept sending me the addresses of our troops. Sometimes a soldier is transferred or is sent back Stateside. I wish you all can hear the voice of a parent or loved one who calls and tells me that their child is back home and if I would please take there name off the list.
You can actually hear the weight being lifted off them.
But sadly, when some come home their real battle starts. Some soldiers may have physical or mental problems. If you know of any soldier who has recently come home and is having a hard time, please find help for them. We owe them that.
They have done so much for us and there is never away that we can properly thank them for doing their duties to keep us safe.
If you're looking for help for a soldier or a soldier looking for help there are a few places where you can turn. If you're experiencing an emotional crisis you can call 1-800-273-TALK. Remember it takes the courage and strength of a warrior to ask for help.
I also encourage all returning soldiers to stop in at the Cherokee County Veterans Affairs Office and talk to Dana Evans. He is the director at Veterans Affairs Office. He can help with many issues facing our veterans and their families. The office is open on Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The phone number is 225-6708.
You can also call him at home if he is not at the office. His home number is 282-4360.
Other ways to get involved with helping our soldiers is to contact the Cherokee VFW Wescott Post #2253. Richard Waterbury is the Post Commander. Also, you can contact the Cherokee American Legion Treptow Post 230, Post Commander David Brown. Both of these groups and their auxiliaries do wonderful charitable work for our soldiers, past and present.