Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Honoring All Veterans --Highlighting One

I can't stop thinking about Captain John Gaffaney. He'd only been on Ft Hood ONE DAY before he was executed. He had been trying to get back in the Armed Services for 3 years... Capt. Gaffaney had served in the Navy and the National Guard. Since 9/11 he's expressed interest in reenlisting. He said he wanted to use his training and experience as a psychiatric nurse to help soldiers deal with their deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Originally he was turned down...this 56 year olf veteran with hearing loss.

Doesn't Captain Gaffaney personify all that we seek to recognize and honor on this day? Someone that had felt the call to serve throughout his life, that put the well being of his fellow man above his own, and fought to overcome odds to fulfill a desire-not for self glorification, but to continue in his service to his country.

"...Gaffaney, 56, a psychiatric nurse, arrived at Fort Hood only a day before last week's shooting, to await deployment to Iraq. Military service had become Gaffaney's mission ever since the Sept. 11 attacks; the Navy and California National Guard veteran couldn't stand the thought of sitting in the comfort of an office in San Diego while young men and women serving overseas could use his help.

Although the Army Reserve turned him down at first, two years ago the military took him back.

"He was so excited when they let him rejoin," said Jennifer Bransford-Koons, who was Gaffaney's supervisor at San Diego County Adult Protective Services. "He felt it was his duty."

"I remember seeing him around here doing a lot of running and training to meet all the milestones to get accepted," Garcia-Drew said. "He wanted to take care of people who were trying to make things right in the world." (source)

Frank Gaffaney reminds me of my friend Solow...who has also been trying in vain to re-enlist since 9/11...

So thank you to all the Frank Gaffaney's out there. I am quite sure that there are hundreds of thousands of stories that embody the honor, courage and loyalty we hope that all of our service members possess.

Sent via BlackBerry from T-Mobile

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