Friday, May 28, 2010

Happy Memorial Day 2010


This Memorial Day has the most incredible significance to our family in Woodstock, IL. My father was born in Belfast, Northern Ireland. My mom was born in Toronto, Ontario. I was born in Toronto and my wife was born in Windsor, Ontario. Our two oldest of five children were also born in Canada ... which brings us to our third child.
Her name is Tara. She is by nature a peace lover. I mean she was for the most part a peace maker in a large family. She is the first Baird in our line of the family to be born in the USA and she leaves on Memorial Day for Fort Sill, Oklahoma to train to be a "Six-Eight Whiskey" or 68W Combat Medic in the United States Army.
The primary role of 68W healthcare specialists in the United States Army is providing medical treatment to wounded soldiers. These medics serve as the basic or first tier of the Army medical system accompanying units as small as platoons (approximately 12-40 soldiers) during training and deployments. Medics provide initial emergency medical care, evacuation, and supervision to other soldiers with medical training (such as Combat Lifesavers) as well as provide medical advice to unit chains of command. Uh, ... I have no clue what this really means ... I just copied it out of Wikipedia. That's one of the benefits of having a daughter that is actually trying to do this stuff ... you are allowed to just copy stuff off the Internet like you're Al Gore. Like Bravo-Seven-Alfa-Four-India-One-Niner-Romeo-Delta-Zulu. Sounds cool when you are calling in coordinates to the nearest Panera Bread.
I guess I can say we are a bit nervous at this moment. And, this is a form of anxiety we are experiencing for the first time as parents. Honestly, I think I am a bit worried for her ... but it is being outweighed at this time by a sense of pride for her desire to serve her country in this way. Tara will begin basic training this coming week at Fort Sill in Oklahoma and I believe the plan is to go to Fort Sam Houston in Texas for advanced individual training if everything goes well in Oklahoma.
I am sure for centuries that American parents have worried about their children heading off to military service in very similar ways. For most of my life, I have heard that "freedom isn't free" ... but today it takes on new meaning in the Baird household. We wish you all a very safe and happy Memorial Day! Please take a moment to pray for our troops everywhere.
Tara! You know we love you. You know we have said it hundreds of times since you were a little girl. I will never forget the day you told me that this is what you wanted to do. Seek God in all things. He's where we can't be for you!
Psalm 32:8 - I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you.
We are tremendously proud of you.
Love, Mom & Dad

22 comments:

ambra said...

Compliments!
... and I am sure everything will be fine!!!

Bruce Caspersonn said...

You have every reason to be proud. Thank Heaven there are people like your daughter.
My daughter-in-law is a Lt.Col. in the Australian Army. As a result I have been kissed and cuddled by an Officer. But not while I was doing my National Service about 100 years ago.

Monica said...

Hang in there dad! I had very similar feelings when my son joined the Army a few years ago. Since joining he's spent a year in Afghanistan and received two Purple Hearts but I don't worry about him. I know he's in good hands. The Army trained him well.

Make sure you attend her graduation! Its a wonderful experience...and a very emotional one worth having.

Frau said...

I thank your brave daughter for our freedom. I pray she stays safe and proud that she is following her dream. She is an amazing example to what we all hope our children to become. Have a wonderful weekend.

Jessica Brunette said...

she's doing an honorable thing, and you should be proud. best wishes to her and your family - the worrying doesn't end until they're back on your comforting doorstep -out of harm's way.

Cheyenne said...

Be proud! I`m sure you are anyway. Good luck to her and Godspeed!

Journaling Woman said...

What a heartfelt post. I too thank her for serving. I know you are proud of her and worried. Why wouldn't you be. I will put her in my prayers.

Teresa

Rabbi Lars Shalom said...

woo

Sally Cicada's Designs said...

There is no safer place on earth for Tara than in the palm of God's hand--even if it is a combat zone!! My best friend is a combat medic & has done two tours in Afghanistan, a tour in Bosnia, and 3 disaster relief missions to devastated areas. She loves what she does and I am very proud to call her my friend. She has had many close calls during her service but can always see how God and the prayers prayed for her have protected her in those times!! Don't ever underestimate the power of your intercession for her--there is no time or distance in prayer and we serve a mighty God!
Blessings,
Sarah :)

Queenie Jeannie said...

God bless your family!! My husband is in the Army, my daughter is about to join the Air Force, and my son is about to get an ROTC scholarship with the Army. Three loved ones in harm's way? A tough load to carry, but I do it with God's grace and my own pride in their efforts.

HOOAH!! :D

DCW Photography said...

Stephen, I know a little of what it is like, I served in the Army, just shy of three years, so believe me when I say everything you are feeling she is feeling it ten times more. Boot camp was a great experience though it didn't change me at all, cept physically, but most kids come home and are like yes sir, no sir, and show a lot of respect to people, I came out the same way I went in they couldn't change me even my Drill Sergent appologized to my parents because they just couldn't break me I was too headstrong, but I did learn a lot and I went in as an 88 Mike 10 or 88m10 which in layman's terms is a Driver, mostly trucks, 18 wheelers, tankers, a delivery boy basically, but sometimes if you were lucky you got to just drive a hummer with the captain, or major all day long which was awesome. I even had an opportunity to recieve more training in a higher pay grade, become a sniper but that wasn't my line of work, and soon found a loop hole in my contract that allowed me to leave with no problems Anyway, don't put too much thought to it, now a days it's a piece of cake, the training, and after, the service is nice, get to go to new places, see new sights, meet new people. It is quite exciting I have a few friends still serving and they are enjoying life.

Stephen Baird said...

thanks to all of you wishing my daughter well and your encouraging words. it's incedible. i was driving across Arizona months ago when my daughter called me and told me that this is what she wanted to do. i was a bit shocked but it seemed far enough away to be calm. i am learning every moment as our hours together are drawing to a close. that is ... i am about to join the army! what, you ask? i couldn't run to save my life ... some of you who know me are familiar with some situations that nearly got me killed just doing photography. but i (we) have just become army family. this is a foreign experience and we will need to learn as we go too. i so appreciate the words that are coming in from around the world to our home. right now its a bundle of mixed feelings ... another story going on here that i will tell you about in a few days.
thanks so much to you all.
nikonsniper steve

Dean Spencer said...

What a selfless act. We are truly greatful for her service. And we are truly blessed by God to have service men and women who give of themselves so we can have our freedoms. Thank you for sharing and tell your daughter "THANK YOU!"

Vicky said...

Stephen, I too am a parent of Army Medic he also did his basic training at Ft.Sill, OK. My son is stationed at Ft. Hood,TX. It was a year ago my son was preparing to go to Iraq for the first time, he has now returned from Iraq, a couple of weeks ago. I prayed to God to keep him safe and all the soldiers who are in Iraq and Afganastan. Its easier now for loved ones over seas to stay in touch with family members. I paid close attention to the news that was going on in Iraq. I even set the time on my phone to the time in the middle east, to keep up with when he would be getting up for work or getting off work.
May God Bless your family.

Thank You

Sashindoubutsu said...

Hi Stephen, you must really be a proud dad. I have a friend in the Air Force and prayers do keep him going. I, too, am proud of your daughter and her good heart to serve.

Good luck to her and God bless you and your family.

Wonderful post.

dominique eichi said...

Blessings to Tara and to your family .

Marka said...

Our prayers are with you all and they go with her wherever she may be.

Jeanne Klaver said...

A beautiful tribute.

Eve said...

God bless, and God's speed Tara!! Thank you for your service!

CTG Ponies said...

What an amazing thing Tara is doing with her life.

JC said...

I have a special place in my heart for the yound men and women who choose to serve others & an extra special place for those who do it while serving their country.
May God bless and keep Tara & your entire family.

PressAgency said...

Dear Stephen, as a former reserve officer in the Medical Service of the German Army I'm personally connected to U.S. soldiers too. I think one can be really proud about those boys and girls serving for their country. Despite the fear getting them home in good health. Be sure Tara is included in my wife's and my prayers.