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August 2018

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made me cry.....and made me proud and thankful and oh so very humble.


i can't type without crying! my husband came home a month ago from a years tour in iraq. since he's navy, he was sent as an individual... no group send off or homecoming. my immediate family traveled 2 hours past their bedtime :) to welcome him home at the airport and i was saddened that spectators of our celebration kept to themselves and kept quiet. what i would have given to have him celebrated by his community. not to mention those soldiers that leave or come home without family support... what a lonely time. thank you for taking the kiddos out of school - so awesome.

Jennifer S

Oh, Karen, brings tears to my eyes....THANK YOU!!!

( from your current class....)


God Bless those that serve.

That was very neat of you to do, and to bring the kids too.

Great pic, Karen!


Thank you for taking the kids and being there to support the soldiers and their families. It is vital that they know the gratitude of everyone in this country and that their families receive community support while they are away. My husband was captured by the Taliban during the course of a mission several days ago, he is currently being held somewhere in Pakistan. The search and rescue operation is ongoing, I ask for prayers for him and all the men that are working around the clock to find him and bring him home safely. God bless.

A Veteran

To Susan: your husband and your family are in our prayers, absolutely!!! God Bless you all, and Thank you!!! I pray you hear good news FAST.


Amen! My brother is currently serving his 3rd tour in Iraq. I can't see a soldier and not get emotional.


To Susan: I just read through the comments and saw yours. I said a little prayer and will continue to keep you and your family in my prayers!

Karen Russell

Susan, it is hard to imagine that as we all go about our normal, everyday lives that things like this are happening to our soldiers. Your husband's safe return will be in my prayers.


I'm a Marine, I have to thank you on behalf of all Marines for showing your support. It means more than you can imagine.

nancy in ks

To Susan:

I can't begin to imagine what you are thinking and feeling. Thank you for commenting here. I, too, will be praying for he is found quickly and released or rescued SAFELY. I wish there was a way to don't have a blog do you? Maybe you could come back here and comment.

To Karen:

It is so easy to justify keeping on with the maintenance of life and not get to the very important things. You set aside the everyday, though, and did something very important and documented it in an incredible way. Your giftedness just continues to amaze me.


Karen, as the mother of a son who will be deployed for the first time to Afghanistan in the summer of 2010, I applaud your efforts! I am planning to go to Germany to see him off since that is where he is stationed. You are teaching your children a very valuable lesson, a lesson that most of our children will never be taught.

And a note for Susan, I will keep your husband and all those working towards his release in my prayers, as well as all those who are serving for the betterment of others.

Leigh Ann

Karen-what a great thing to do--for the soldiers and for your kids!

Susan--sending up prayers for the safe return of your husband.


Susan, I'll add my prayers to the list. May you all be comforted and protected during this time. Sending hugs--and cyber shoulders to cry on when needed.

Sara M

Oh Karen, this post made me cry. My "baby" brother is leaving for Afghanistan in about a month....
Thanks for bringing your kids to support the troops. I think with all the media's attention, focused on the economy, our troops get forgotten about.

Susan- your comment made me cry even more. I will be saying many prayers for your husband's safe return. Hugs to you.


What a beautiful photo!! Speaks volumes!


Your husband will be in our families prayers. I can't imagine what you must be going through... Hope he is safe and sound soon.


Susan - (((Hugs))) Sending a prayer up right now for his safety and quick return!

Thank you for your post Karen. I'm so thankful for their sacrifice and service - and for that of their family's as well. I wish each soldier a safe return.


Thanks for sharing this Karen, it is interesting that since the election, I haven't seen much reporting going on about this stuff - funny how the news we get is only that which the news agencies want us to get. To Susan, I will pray for your husband safety and for you, peace and comfort in the situation.


Do all veterans a favor. Take the kids and attend the homecoming of those returning! Thank a vet each and every time you see one in town, at the store, at church.

Trina McBride

Karen, Yes I agree about every soldier should have a good send off and an even better return home. My BIL is in the Army and it is such an honor to have a hero in our family. Thank you to your family for the hero you give our country. Please tell Josh Downs thank you for all his dedication to serve our great Land.

tara pollard pakosta

that is awesome!
I would love to be able to send
off or welcome home soldiers.
they deserve the support and LOVE!
thanks for doing that karen & familY!
and, Susan, prayers for the safe return of your husband.

Charli H

It's a love hate relationship you have with it, being a military wife. My husband has just returned to active duty after two and a half year civilian and I know a deployment is imminent after he has done this round of training. It's impossible to not feel proud of them, and how committed they are to the cause. Susan, I pray for the safe return of your husband, or at the very least some word of how/where he is. I think the only thing worse than knowing the worst is not knowing anything at all. I will keep you and your family in our prayers.


that's awesome, Karen!


Amen! And God Bless you and your family for taking the time to see them off. It means more to them than you will ever know. Thank you!


You are so awesome!
Love Love Love that photo!


Karen, you are seriously inspirational in so many ways. I am going to look into deployment/arrivals in my area and see if I can go with the kids to at least one.
I also just signed up as a volunteer photographer for the littlest heroes. They didn't say they were looking for photographers in my area, but maybe they will be sooner or later.
And on a side note...just purchased the Canon 135mm 2.0L and the 50mm 1.2L today!


Susan, keeping good thoughts for you, your husband, and everyone serving this country.

teresa b

That's awesome Karen!! Makes me cry! I thank God for the service men and women out there risking there lives for what we so many times take for granted.

Susan praying for your husbands safe return home...


What a great example you set for your kids and for us, Karen. I never thought about doing that myself. Shame on me for taking my liberty for granted...thanks.

Susan--God has your husband in the palm of His hand. He will never leave him or forsake him. My family and I will keep him in our prayers.

Alicia Sharp

Thank you for doing this Karen! My cousin has served 2 years in Iraq and just came home. It means so much to them to have everyone there. Thank YOU for teaching your family the little things!! God bless!!


Karen, I am sorry to have hijacked your comments for today's post, yet I am grateful for every prayer and kind wish offered. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I surprised myself by leaving my earlier comment, typing those words makes everything more real, it seems raw and shocking to see them in print. One of your readers asked if I have a blog, the address is Thank you again.

Karen Russell

Susan, you did not hijack my just really enforced the fact that we all need to be so thankful for what our servicement do. I am indebted to your and your husband.

Thanks for leaving your blog address - you've been on my mind all day.


thanks for taking the time to do that. i'm all the way across the country from you, but i will be seeing my dad's unit off as they deploy to iraq in 2 weeks. he's 59 and in the last year of his 40 years with the national guard and will spend it in iraq.

kristan martin

Susan,you and your husband are in my thoughts and prayers. I don't even know what to say.

Karen, I love that you are a patriot and you prioritized support for our troops over a day of school.


That was just so beautiful and I agree with every sentiment you expressed.


I couldn't agree more...and now I'm crying. Beautiful picture by the and our flag get me every time!

Laura Barefoot

You're a great American, and you're raising your children to be the same. We need more parents like you!

terri emmons


my nephew is amoung one of the Oregon National Guard thats off to Itaq.
They are in Georgia now getting ready to head over. There ceremony was May 2nd at te Memorial Coliseum. We came from Ventura Ca to see him off. It was a very moving ceremony to me. To see all the guys going and for what they will be doing. It was great to see all the people that came to see them off. It was nice you went and saw this I no presonally it does mean a lot to these guys that people show the support they do still.. My nephew told me that and thanked me tons for going.

Thank you have a great rest of the weekend.


my son is a Marine and has done 2 tours. I am so grateful everytime I hear of a group who does these send offs and welcome homes. I would drive hours if it meant I could be there, it's just that flying across the country is a bit difficult. Thank you!


You made the right choice and by taking the kids along you have planted the seed to show respect and gratitude to those brave men and woman that serve our great nation.
I work retail and whenever Serviceman or woman comes through my line I take the time to thank them for protecting our freedoms.

God bless you and your family and all those that serve in the military and their families too.

Stephanie V

I didn't appreciate the sacrifice that many have given for our son enlisted in the air force and is currently in bootcamp, I am beginning to know the sacrifice and the tears that are shed for each soldier and agree with soldier should leave without a huge outpouring of support from the community!

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