color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: October 2006

Monday, October 30, 2006

2006 Project Valour-IT Competition Starts Today

Most of you that come by here know that our Army son was wounded in Iraq in August 2005. His physical wounds have healed, but we know that there are many soldiers that need assistance.. and here's a project that is a wonderful way to help our wounded warriors!
If you need a reason (other than that these men and women have been wounded in your name), give in honor of your Dad or Grandad who served... or give in honor of your children and grandchildren who will still live in freedom in the greatest country on Earth because of the wounded and other military members that serve.
This cartoon is from the wonderful Cox & Forkum... but so deliciously captures the essence of this incrdible and noteworthy project.
I have unashamedly cribbed the following wholesale from the fabulous Blackfive.

ARMY STRONG! - 2006 Project Valour-IT Competition Starts Today
Posted by

"At that time I had no use of either hand. I know how humbling it is, how humiliating it feels. And I know how much better I felt, how amazingly more functional I felt, after Soldiers' Angels provided me with a laptop and a loyal reader provided me with the software. I can't wait to do the same, to give that feeling to another soldier at Walter Reed." - Captain Chuck Ziegenfuss at TC Override (wounded in Iraq)

Want to be part of something big?

Project Valour-IT, in memory of SFC William V. Ziegenfuss (Captain Chuck Ziegenfuss' father), provides voice-controlled software and laptop computers to wounded Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines recovering from hand and arm injuries or amputations at major military medical centers. Operating laptops by speaking into a microphone, our wounded heroes are able to send and receive messages from friends and loved ones, surf the 'Net, and communicate with buddies still in the field without having to press a key or move a mouse.

Valour-IT's online fundraising competition begins today! Let's see who can raise the most money to help reconnect our wounded warriors with the world! (Note from SSM: Only the fundraising designates a service as a friendly rivalry: all funds raised are used to provide any soldier, sailor, airman or marine that needs a pc...)

WHAT: Friendly fundraising competition for Valour-IT.
WHEN: October 30th through Veterans Day, November 10th.
WHERE: Based in the blogosphere, spreading everywhere else.
WHY: Because giving wounded warriors with hand and arm injuries access to a computer supports their healing and puts them back in touch with the world.
HOW: Blogger teams will be divided along military branches, with civilians "up for grabs."

The lines are drawn by service rivalry:

Jarheads (Marines) will be led by Villainous Company
Zoomies (Air Force) will be led by Op-For
Squids (Navy) will be led by Chaotic Synaptic Activity.
Doggies (Army) led by Matt and Jim of Blackfive

Non-military bloggers should choose a branch (like the Army) to support.

Now, normally, I don't take part in the brutal gentle inter-service rivalry, especially during war. But this is for a very important charity. So, civilian bloggers, choose your branch. Choose wisely...

Sign up for the Army team by enlisting at the Project Valour-IT site and click (under Army) "Join". We'll generate links, buzz, and get these heroes some Commo support!

What Valour-IT Needs From You:

Blog and email regularly about Valour-IT and the competition

Tell your friends, family and neighbors about Valour-IT

Put up these flyers around your community (I put one up at my local Starbucks).

So all you bloggers sign up with your choice of service and get the word out. Donate NOW!!!

It's a tax-deductible donation and eligible for matching funds from companies who do that sort of thing (see: for proof for the cautious).

The snail mail address for those who'd rather donate that way (be sure to put ARMY (or your preferred military branch) in big letters on the check):

Soldiers' Angels
1150 N Loop 1604 W, Suite 108-493
San Antonio, TX 78248

Let's be a part of something big.

The Army Team:
Wild Tangents
My Side of the Puddle
G.R.I.T.S a/k/a Keep My Soldier Safe
The Thunder Run

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Waiting on the World to Change

When Noah graduated from high school, one of his (many) graduation gifts was 4‑second row tickets to the John Mayer concert at Jones Beach on Long Island. He told me many times that it was the best graduation present he received (he took 3 girls along.) I like John Mayer's music, too. I know -- I’m the wrong demographic. He’s not my favorite artist, but I think his music is pleasant: he has an easy style and the musicianship is very good. I don’t listen to his music because it is thought provoking nor because it rocks. It’s just good listening music.

The other day I picked up his latest studio release, “
Continuum”. The first song on the CD is entitled, “Waiting on the World to Change” and it irked me a bit, so I decided to pop in and comment:

Dear John Mayer:

You say

me and all my friends we're all misunderstood
they say we stand for nothing and
there's no way we ever could
now we see everything that's going wrong with the world
and those who lead it
we just feel like we don't have the means to rise above and beat it

so we keep waiting

waiting on the world to change
we keep on waiting
waiting on the world to change

When you say, “we're all misunderstood, they say we stand for nothing and there's no way we ever could, now we see everything that's going wrong with the world and those who lead it” I’m sure you think that is a new sentiment -- one that is unique to your generation, but I seem to recall that many of us said the same thing in the ‘60’s -- but we got active… we even managed to get the voting age lowered to 18. We volunteered. We participated. We worked to change things from the inside. We educated ourselves on the issues of our day (which, not surprisingly, were The War, the economy, nuclear proliferation, immigration, taxes, social security, health care… hmmmm.)

You and all of your friends have the same means as the rest of us to “rise above it” and influence your world: it’s called THE VOTE. If you get out and vote, then those people you choose to represent you will do your bidding. If you find a candidiate that you believe in, go volunteer for the campaign. Register voters. If you’re just going to sit around “waiting on the world to change” then you have no one to blame but yourselves when it doesn't (change).

Then you say

it's hard to beat the system
when we're standing at a distance
so we keep waiting waiting on the world to change
now if we had the power to bring our neighbors home from war
they would have never missed a Christmas
no more ribbons on their door
and when you trust your television
what you get is what you got
cause when they own the information,
oh they can bend it all they want

As for not having the means to “beat the system”… why would you want to beat a system that pays you so well to do what you love and one that permits you to say whatever it is on your mind? And again, if you are “standing at a distance” it is a choice you made not to participate in the process of government. As I stated previously, you DO have the power. (See comment on voting, above.) But as for “bringing our neighbors home from war” -- really, John, there is nothing we’d like better. We are ALL for peace and love (ok, most of us). I certainly am. But please enlighten us all, John, and let us know how you think we should stop the monsters of the world when United Nations’ resolutions don’t work and diplomatic means have all failed. Please, do tell, John, how you keep America safe from such madmen?? Finally, we don’t trust the information from the television either and we finally agree on something -- that news is bent, John -- but no one “owns” the information -- it’s why there is the Internet and, more specifically, blogs. You just have to want to find the truth.

You continue with

that's why we're waiting waiting on the world to change
we keep on waiting waiting on the world to change

If you’re just going to sit around “waiting on the world to change” then you have no one to blame but yourself.

it's not that we don't care,
we just know that the fight ain't fair
so we keep on waiting
waiting on the world to change

Is the fight not fair, John, or the system… or just that “your guy” didn’t win? (See first comment above about voting.) And there are people in your generation who do care and have proven it: the soldiers who have volunteered to fight… to defend. They are the ones that have raised their hands and said, “This we’ll defend.” They aren’t sitting around whining about how “the fight ain’t fair” (how ironic given that they are actually fighting in a REAL fight that ain’t fair.) These young men and women have chosen to protect a form of government and the rights guaranteed by that system even though they agree that the system isn’t perfect.

and we're still waiting
waiting on the world to change
we keep on waiting
waiting on the world to change
one day our generation is gonna rule the population
so we keep on waiting
waiting on the world to change
we keep on waiting waiting on the world to change

Some day “your generation” will be the majority voice, John… but you’re all still going to have to get out and vote, participate and volunteer in order for your voices to be heard. If you’re just going to sit around “waiting on the world to change” then you have no one to blame but yourself. If you are not part of the solution, John, then you are part of the problem.

Lastly, I point out to the young Mr. Mayer that his
video for this song features him walking through his beloved New York City interspersed with video of some rather old looking graffiti artists painting buildings with such provocative things as the symbol for nuclear content, guns, and the words “Exploited”, “Think”, etc. Oddly, John, I didn’t see any video or images of the World Trade Center/Ground Zero… hmmmm.

Copyright Some Soldier's Mom 2006. All rights reserved.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Military Family Compassionate Auction

The Auction is Now Open
You can bid
Military Family Compassionate Auction
The launch of the e-Bay auction of Lt. Col. Buzz Patterson's books benefiting Army Spc. Reid "SC Eagle" Stanley at and his wife Ellicia.
The auction bidding began at 10 p.m. ET, Thursday night, 10/19.
Constitutional Public Radio is honored to join Buzz Patterson in this 10-day-long benefit auction for Army Spc. Reid Stanley and Ellicia, who is battling cancer of the brain, breast, and lungs. SC Eagle, stationed in Germany, was deployed to Afghanistan, and now faces another, more personal war, one with Ellicia's life in the balance. They have three young children. And mounting expenses.
The Auction is Now Open
You can bid HERE
More information is available at The Radio Patriots blog.
There is no worthier a cause. Every penny counts.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Update on Stacy's Michael

Earlier today, Stacy wrote:

We had a terrible night, it was after 0200 this morning before we finally got him calm. I got maybe an hour of sleep, and Marcus came to relieve me about 0600 and I went home for a quick shower and to see the construction progress. Hopefully today will be a little better for him.
Little does he know he has always been good for me, I just don't want him getting the big head.
He had a visitor from our Governor's office late yesterday afternooon. I told Michael that he sure has all these folks wrapped around his little finger. The army has been so wonderful. He apparently works with the best of folks. He had a room full of army folks this morning bright and early. I never knew he had so many mom's.
Well, Stacy called a little while ago and Michael was finally AWAKE (all the way!). He was talking a mile a minute, laughing... (I could hear him clearly in the background!) He had a whole bunch of visitors who had been trying to get him to wake up -- and they did their job well 'cause HE IS AWAKE. All that talking sure was music to Marcus & Stacy's and the family's ears (mine, too!)
So, the recovery begins...
Stacy, there are many, many people praying for Michael and you and the family. It was so good to hear the smile in your voice! We love ya and are thinking good thoughts for you and Michael.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Start Praying, Please

When Noah was wounded in Iraq, one of the first people to call me was my wonderful friend, Stacy from "Keep My Soldier Safe" (now G.R.I.T.S.). Her son Michael was deployed about the same time...

Well Michael has been in a motorcycle wreck... she just called me on her way to the hospital so she doesn't know anything yet... and then she had to hang up because a cop was pulling her over for speeding! (I told her to make him give her an escort!!) She said she'd call me tomorrow and I told her she had to call me tonight or I wouldn't sleep!!

So please start praying that Michael is alright.

You think when you have them home from the battlefield your worries will be over... sometimes they bring some of the battle home with them...
UPDATE: 11:00PM Sunday
Stacy called... Michael has a fractured pelvis, both arms are broken, one is very bad... they are deciding what surgeries need to take place... he's sedated and intubated to assist his breathing. The initial head CT was negative for bleeding (he did have his helmet on). I'll update as I can. PLEASE KEEP PRAYING!!
Michael was awake during the night and they removed the breathing tube, but they had to re-insert the tube this morning. He has not been conscious long enough to assess his neck and spine, but they are hoping that adjusting his pain medications will help rouse him. Stacy and her family are at Michael's bedside. Michael is listed in stable condition.
Please keep Stacy and Michael and the family in your thoughts and prayers.
Spoke with Stacy a few hours ago... Michael was in surgery... he had awakened early in the afternoon. He's not happy about being there and wants to go home (that will be a while). They put a screw in the broken pelvis and a plate and screws in one arm. Got pain for sure. Stacy says he is holding his own and doing well (under the circumstances). It is going to be a long road to recovery. She asks that everyone keep praying.
Stacy we love you, Lady. Thinking and prayin' for you all.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Still Kicking

Sorry to be neglecting the blog... distracted by lots of other things... planning for the Holidays... How is that possible?? The Holidays? Already? I know the first major Holiday is 6 or 7 weeks away, but when your kids are so far flung, it takes lots of conversations of who? what? where? when? how?

But I do want to take this opportunity to ask you to participate in this project and to copy and paste into an email and send it on to all your family and friends... and a big THANK YOU to KAT for undertaking this. My cards are going out today!


During this holiday season, let's show our troops we love and support them!!!! From September 30 to November 30, Kathy Orr will be collecting holiday cards for troops stationed in high-combat areas in Iraq and Afghanistan. Being away from home and living in harsh conditions during the holiday season is especially difficult ~ they need to know we have not forgotten them!!! Mail from home helps to keep our troops' morale strong, making a very real difference in their lives.
Send your signed, unsealed holiday cards to:
Mrs. Kathy Orr
P.O. Box 1660
Loganville, Georgia, 30052
The cards can be handmade or store-bought... for that matter, they don't even have to be cards; a hand-written or typed letter is just as wonderful! This is a great opportunity to get your Scout troop, school, church and other civic organizations involved in doing something to show support for our troops.
If you wish to send an email greeting (which will be printed off and mailed along with the holiday cards), please send an email to:
**IMPORTANT GUIDELINES: This is not a "dating service" of any type. Please do not send suggestive or otherwise inappropriate cards or materials. Please also refrain from making political statements of any nature. Kathy will be reading and screening every card received to ensure that the above guidelines are adhered to (which is why the cards should not be sealed.)

Remember: This is strictly to let the troops know that we love them, we are proud of them and that we HAVE NOT FORGOTTEN them! If you have any questions, please contact Kathy at