It truly is a deep calling that brings men and women to wish to give of their life, their precious hours, to help others. To be sure, there are some for whom the uniform and badge is a temporary costume or a way to present a strength they do not own. But for others? It is just what you have to do, else the echoes in that hall of the mind don't quiet.
His Grandpa cut a fine form in his own uniform, garnering his own collection of medals. The Purple Heart and the Bronze Star were there as well as others that I did not know. He was always able to relate those stories with a smile and glint in his eye though we know those days were hard and cold for a southern man who'd never ventured far from his home.
I suspect that is what gave Trooper his start. All those stories and the movies Grandpa loved...the same smile in the same country, decades apart and mere miles.
I love this photo with all his youth showing and the cheekbones of his great grandparents whose families were also tremendous fighters. His skills, honed with grandpa and extended through his silent jaunts in North Georgia woods, were gathered knowing his future. And today, they continue to serve him as he strives to do the very best he can to deserve the honor that his uniform demands.
And it happens moment after moment, coast to coast, from one time zone to another and in every possible location of the world. We are fortunate to have them, that stalwart line between us and what we cannot manage alone. So easy to forget them...let one day be theirs. Just this one day...