Category Archives: Military

Should Never Be Forgotten

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Creative Commons license used. The U.S. Army, 'Flags-In' at Arlington National Cemetery for Memorial Day 2008.

Creative Commons license used. The U.S. Army, ‘Flags-In’ at Arlington National Cemetery for Memorial Day 2008.

James’ mother and father came from England
Wanting freedom from the Crown
He lined up side by side with his brothers
As the Redcoats shot him down
His sacrifice should not be forgotten.

Samuel grew up on a farm
Believing a human is not a slave
At Gettysburg he killed seven Confederates
Before a Southerner put him in an unmarked grave
His sacrifice should not be forgotten.

Bobby flew from Iowa to Normandy
Heeding his President’s call
On a beach in France
He gave the world his all
His sacrifice should not be forgotten.

Frank went to Korea
To give freedom to people in another land
He gave his life
His remains are in foreign sand
His sacrifice should not be forgotten.

Donald found himself in Vietnam
In a war many opposed
He was tortured for many years
Before his now peaceful body was carelessly disposed
His sacrifice should not be forgotten.

Tanisha had to serve after 9/11
She knew terrorism had to go
In the sandbox her Humvee hit an IED
A painful death was the last thing she’d know
Her sacrifice should not be forgotten.
Their sacrifices should not be forgotten.
Their sacrifices should never be forgotten.

Build-A-Bear for the Troops!

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I was sent this press release from Joint Support Services. Here’s a fun way to support the troops by supporting the USO!

Build-A-Bear Workshop(R), the interactive entertainment retailer of customized stuffed animals, have announced that it is celebrating Military Appreciation Month by supporting the USO and offering troops and their families a military discount. The Build-A-Bear Workshop Foundation will invite Guests to donate $1 at checkout registers May 3 through June 7 in any Build-A-Bear Workshop retail location in the United States to support the USO, which provides morale, welfare and recreational activities to service members and their families.

Also during this timeframe, all members of the armed services and their direct dependents will receive a 20% discount on any purchase at Build-A-Bear Workshop store locations in the United States with the presentation of a valid government issued military identification card.

For Guests looking for a special way to salute their favorite military hero, Build-A-Bear Workshop offers a variety of military inspired options. The Camo Bear ($18) complete with a Build-A-Sound(R)($8) for Guests to use to record a 10-second personal message, is great for servicemen and women and their families. Similar products available at Build-A-Bear Workshop include:

— Army Officer Uniform
— Marine Outfit
— Naval Outfit
— Air Service Uniform
— Coast Guard Work Uniform
— Digital Camo Outfit
— Sailor Outfit

For more information, call 888.560.BEAR (2327) or visit the company’s award-winning Web site at

Category: Military

Ignite Phoenix #6 Links

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These are the links used for my presentation at Ignite Phoenix #6. All links on this post will open in a new window/tab.

Operation Homefront Arizona:

Soldiers’ Angels:

Arizona Coalition for Military Families:

Joint Services Support:

Twitter links: #militarymon, @KissMyGumbo, @bouhammer, @SoldiersAngels, @milblogging

Cup of Joe for a Joe:

Thank you for supporting our men and women in uniform. God bless you.

Military and Veteran – Free Dinner

I have heard of a few restaurants offering free dinner to all veterans and active duty military members this month in honor of Veteran’s Day. I will start with the two I remember. If you know of others, please tweet me @azbubba or email me (azbubba at gmail).

Veteran’s Day: Wednesday, November 11

Applebee’s is offering free meals all day long. You will need to provide proof of military service.

NYPD Pizza in Arizona is offering free lunch from 11-4 to all retired and active military employees! Two slices OR one slice and a side salad, plus a soda. Military ID needed, and can dine in or carry out. Also, NYPD Pizza gives a 10% discount year round to all military, police and firefighters.

Dilly’s Deli says they’ll pick up the tab! Stop in and show your military ID.

Not a dinner deal, but Empire Beauty College is giving free haircuts to all military 9:30am – 8:00pm. 2727 W. Glendale Av., Phoenix, AZ, 85051.

Monday, November 16

Golden Corral
is offering free dinner from 5-9pm. Click on the link to view spots that were filmed by Gary Sinise, Bo Derek, and Collective Soul. It’s always nice to see actors and artists taking time to say thank you.

If you know of other Arizona or national restaurants offering similar benefits for our military, contact me and I’ll be glad to add them.

Category: Military

Eat out and support our troops

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It’s simple. If you live in the Phoenix area, visit a TGIFriday’s this Thursday, July 16th. Make sure you click the link below, print out the flyer, and TGIFriday’s will give Operation Homefront 20% of the proceeds from your meal.

IMPORTANT! You must print the flyer from the Operation Homefront site in order to ensure they get the donation. Click here for the flyer. See you at TGIFriday’s on Thursday!

Category: Military

RIP, AS Stephen Fortunato

The only thing I can add to the following is: amen. Original with video here at the Boston Globe, hat tip to Michelle Malkin.

The following is a blog entry written on Aug. 30, 2008, by Army Specialist Stephen Fortunato, who was killed Tuesday in Afghanistan when the vehicle he was riding in was blown up by an improvised explosive device. This entry was forwarded to the Globe by his mother, Elizabeth “Betty” Crawford.

If I may …
I’d like to say something….Just to get it out there so it is clear.To all the pampered and protected Americans who feel it is their duty to inform me that I am not fighting for their freedom, and that i am a pawn in Bush’s agenda of greed and oil acquisition: Noted, and [expletive deleted] You.

I am not a robot. i am not blind or ignorant to the state of the world or the implications of the “war on terrorism.” i know that our leaders have made mistakes in the handling of a very sensitive situation, but do not for one second think that you can make me lose faith in what we, meaning America’s sons, daughters, fathers, and mothers in uniform are doing.

I am doing my part in fighting a very real enemy of the United States, i.e. Taliban, Al Qaida, and various other radical sects of Islam that have declared war on our way of life. Unless you believe the events of 9/11 were the result of a government conspiracy, which by the way would make you a MORON, there is no reasonable argument you can make against there being a true and dangerous threat that needs to be dealt with. i don’t care if there are corporations leaching off the war effort to make money, and i don’t care if you don’t think our freedom within America’s borders is actually at stake. i just want to kill those who would harm my family and friends. it is that simple. Even if this is just a war for profit or to assert America’s power, so what? Someone has to be on top and I want it to be us. There’s nothing wrong with wishing prosperity for your side.

I am a proud American. i believe that my country allows me to live my life more or less however i want to, and believe me, i have seen what the alternative of that looks like. i also believe that our big scary government does way more than it has to to help complete [expletive deleted]-ups get back on their feet, a stark comparison to places where leaders just line their own pockets with gold while allowing the people who gave them their power and privilage to starve. I have chosen my corner. I back my country, and am proud to defend it against aggressors. Also, if you dare accuse us of being inhumane, or overly aggressive because we have rolled into someone else’s country and blown some [expletive deleted] up and shot some people, let me remind you of just how inhumane we COULD be in defending ourselves. Let me remind you that we have a warhead that drops multiple bomblets from the stratosphere which upon impact, would turn all the sand in Iraq to glass, and reduce every living thing there to dust. Do we use it? No. Instead we use the most humane weapon ever devised: the American soldier. We send our bravest (and perhaps admitably craziest) men and women into enemy territory, into harms way, to root out those whom we are after and do our best to leave innocent lives unscathed.

…One last thing…a proposal. i know it has been stated time and time again but i just think it is worthy of reiteration. If you find yourself completely disgusted with the way America is being ran, and how we handle things on the global stage, you can leave. Isn’t that amazing? No one will stop you! If you are an anarchist, there are places you can go where there is no government to tell you anything. That’s right…you are left solely to your own devices and you can handle the men who show up at your door with AKs in any way that you see fit. Just don’t try good old American debate tactics on them because you will most likely end up bound and blind-folded, to have your head chopped off on the internet so your parents can see it. However if you insist on staying here and taking advantage of privilages such as free speach and WIC, keep the counter-productive [expletive deleted] to a minimum while the grown ups figure out how to handle this god-awful mess in the middle east.

Category: Military, United States

There she inhales!

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A Father’s Grief

For a minute, please put away whatever opinion you have on the US military operations, and please take the time to read this story. I am not trying to sway you one way or the other. This is a human interest story only.

My friends at Blue Star Chronicles found an article in the Dallas Morning News about Roy Velez, a Christian who has lost two sons in the United States’ war on terrorism. It is a lengthy article, but well worth your time to read. Please read the article, and then scroll down.













Because I am a Christian and a previous caretaker to a family member with a severe mental illness, I feel like adding my $0.02.

Both sons were human. They made mistakes in their lives. However, both were men of character, answering the call of their country without looking back. Even after losing his brother, Andrew went back to Afghanistan to continue to serve his country. At a time where he could have said “I won’t serve” without anyone questioning his character, he honored his commitment to his country, even over the objections of his father.

The reason for hiding my observations with empty space follows. As you read in the story, Andrew was not killed by enemy fire, but a self-inflicted gunshot. Some would cheapen Andrew’s character, saying that he made the decision to take his own life. Some Christians would even question his salvation because of his manner of death. I say that both groups are absolutely wrong.

There are a lot of soldiers who suffer mental illnesses as a direct result of the totally unnatural rigors of war. Adults that aren’t old enough to have attended their fifth high school reunion are watching close friends violently murdered, killing other human beings, and enduring many stresses that no human should ever have to endure. I believe that war induces mental illness in two ways. Sometimes it is caused directly because of what the soldier experiences, while others already have a chemical imbalance that predisposes them to illness. War is merely the trigger to set off what is already in place biologically.

My ex-wife has several mental illness diagnoses. Sometimes she is a wonderful, generous person with a big heart. However, I’ve also seen her at her worst. Yelling, hitting, destructive, and also extremely suicidal. During lucid times, she has expressed the opinion that suicide is nothing more than a person’s decision to end their own life. But if someone’s brain causes someone to end their own life, isn’t that indication enough that their brain is not working correctly? If your arm is broken, your brain tells you that it’s broken, and that you need to get it fixed. If you’re having trouble breathing, your brain tells you that you need to get medical attention. But if your brain is broken…how would you know to get help? The fact is: you don’t.

Andrew’s brain was broken. We don’t know if he had a predisposition towards mental illness before he went to war, and it really doesn’t matter. His brain had suffered injuries because of experiencing combat and the loss of his brother, injuries which turned out to be fatal. The manner in which he met death does not make his sacrifice any less heroic than his brother’s.

If you are a Christian reading this and you question whether or not Andrew is going to heaven…don’t. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that suicide nullifies the payment that Jesus made for his sins, and the notion that it does was invented by man. If I’m wrong (and God knows that I frequently am), please correct me. And if you’re not Christian, save the “organized religion” crap for someone else.

Please continue to pray for their father that he would experience many blessings for the extremely noble way he has handled these tragedies.

Category: Christianity, Military