Thursday, November 23, 2006

Heartwarming Happenings This Thanksgiving...

"May your stuffing be tasty
May your turkey plump,
May your potatoes and gravy
Have nary a lump.
May your yams be delicious
And your pies take the prize,
And may your Thanksgiving dinner
Stay off your thighs!"
-Author Unknown

Civilian Turkey Day Hospitality:
Hundreds of civilian families have invited deploying military members to their homes this Thanksgiving for some Texas hospitality...

"About 1,000 trainees in the Army's 32nd Medical Brigade at Fort Sam Houston will take part in "Mission Thanksgiving," spending the holiday eating and relaxing in the homes of 500 or so local volunteers.

Thousands of other soldiers across the country will participate in similar programs, but the one at Fort Sam Houston — which has been in place about 20 years — is one of the largest.

"At first, some soldiers aren't sure if they want to do it," said the brigade's chaplain, Jonathan Etterbeek. "They thought they wouldn't like it, but they really enjoyed it." (source)

Soldiers in the Sandbox get something to be Thankful for:
In Iraq Senior Commission officers and NCOs are standing guard while the rank and file feast.

"It’s part of a long-standing Thanksgiving tradition in the U.S. Army where senior leaders serve junior soldiers.

Before and after the meal, there will be special religious services. There will be downtime to watch DVDs and e-mail family members back home. And there will be at least two big in-country competitions. “Thanksgiving is the ‘Super Bowl’ for our cooks,” Major Jay Adams, an Army spokesman based at Camp Anaconda (in the Iraqi city of Balad), tells National Review Online. “There will be patriotic ice sculptures and other displays, and the commanding general will recognize the top dining facility and individual cooks in various categories.”

The highlight of the day will be the big “Turkey Bowl” football game played between the Army and the Air Force at Camp Anaconda." (source)

Iraqi That Saved Americans Gets his Thanksgiving Wish:
Iraqi interpreter learns he can stay in the U.S. and gives thanks...

"The first Thanksgiving was about a new beginning in a new country and that's very much Ismael's story.

The brave Iraqi interpreter saved American soldiers and they returned the favor by rescuing Ismael from his native country where he was targeted for death by insurgents.

Ismael longed to become an American citizen; the only true guarantee he would be safe and never had to return.

Now as Thanksgiving approaches, the young war hero has gotten his wish." (source)

Six year old saves his Mother's life on Thanksgiving Eve:
"During an afternoon walk, Isaac's mom fell unconscious. Isaac, without missing a beat, called for help. This is part of the 911 call.

Operator: Colorado Springs 911, what's the address of your emergency?
Caller: Yes, I'm at Venetucci Park. My mom can't breathe.
Operator: Okay. What's your name?
Caller: Isaac.
Operator: Alright, Isaac, how old are you?
Caller: 5

Well, actually, Little Isaac Kubik shows us on his fingers that he’s six years old. But, getting that number right wasn't important the day his mother was lying unconscious on the ground.

Operator: And you said her eyes are open. Is she talking to you at all?
Caller: She's quiet right now.
Operator: Can you have her lay on her back for me, Isaac?
Caller: Mom, lay on her back... She won't." (source)

The 911 operator says she will nominate Isaac for the "Little Heroes" award.

Policeman Saves Baby from Burning Building:
A baby was saved from a burning house by a Des Moines police officer on Thanksgiving eve despite orders never to enter a burning building.

It is Thanksgiving eve and no one is more thankful than a Des Moines mother whose baby was trapped inside the family's burning home. The fire happened on the south side of Des Moines at 4040 Southeast 16th street. Two Des Moines police officers, first on the scene, are credited with saving the child. However the officers say they are just thankful they were able to do their job.

"We held her back and she started screaming my baby is in there and I said ‘Where' and she said way in the back." You might call officer Jeremy Britto a hero. He would disagree, but we'll let you be the judge.

"I crawled in took a look couldn't see anything about 12 inches off the ground." The smoke was so thick inside the burning home that it forced Officer Britto back. Meanwhile, another officer was working the opposite side of the home trying to get in the back door. As soon as that officer punched through a window, the baby started crying. Like a beacon on a dark night...the crying lead Officer Britto to the baby. He grabbed the baby and quickly made it outside.

As family members consoled the baby's mother, paramedics checked out minor burns to the boy. For Officer Britto, this is all in a days work. "This is basically what I's part of the job." (source)

Wishing each of you and your families a very happy and filling Thanksgiving!

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