Smith-Pletcher Post 779

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Donations?

Submitted by Dave Putnam

As you open your pockets for the next natural disaster, or for Christmas donations, please keep these facts in mind:

The American Red Cross President and CEO Marsha J. Evans' salary for the year was $651,957 plus expenses.

The United Way President Brian Gallagher receives a  $375,000 base salary along with numerous expense benefits.

UNICEF CEO Caryl M. Stern  receives $1,200,000 per  year (100k per month) plus all expenses including a ROLLS ROYCE . Less  than 5
cents of your donated dollar goes to the cause.

The Salvation Army's Commissioner Todd Bassett receives a salary of only $13,000 per year (plus housing) for managing this $2 billion dollar organization. 96 percent of donated dollars go to the cause.

The American Legion National Commander receives a $0.00 zero
salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Veterans of Foreign Wars National Commander receives a
$0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Disabled American Veterans National Commander receives a
$0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Military Order of Purple Hearts National Commander receives a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their families and youth!

The Vietnam Veterans Association National Commander receives
a $0.00 zero salary. Your donations go to help Veterans and their
families and youth!


No further comment is necessary. 

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 Click here: What honor looks like: The flash mob at Gate 38 of Reagan National Airport | MullerOver.com

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One of Maxine's very bestPLEASE READ THIS.  


Minorities


We need to show more sympathy for these people.
* They travel miles in the heat.
* They risk their lives crossing a border.
* They don't get paid enough wages.
* They do jobs that others won't do or are afraid to do.
* They live in crowded conditions among a people who speak a different language.
* They rarely see their families, and they face adversity all day ~ every day..

I'm not talking about illegal Mexicans ~
I'm talking about our troops!
Doesn't it seem strange that so many are willing to lavish all kinds of social benefits on illegals, but don't support our troops?

Wouldn't it be great if we took the $360,000,000,000 (that's billion) we spend on illegals every year, and spend it on our troops!!!

A veteran is someone who, at one point in their life, wrote a blank check made payable to‘The United States of America ’ for any amount, up to and including their life.  

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At a time when politicians tend to apologize for our country's prior actions, here's a refresher on how some of our former patriots handled negative comments about our country.
  
  These stories are good reminders of how proud and thankful we should always be as Americans:
 
JFK'S  Secretary of State, Dean Rusk, was in France in the early 60's when DeGaule decided to  pull out of NATO.  DeGaule said he wanted all US  military out of France as soon as possible.

Rusk responded,
  "Does that include those who are buried here?"

DeGaule did not respond.

You could have heard a pin drop. 

When in England,
at a fairly large conference, Colin Powell was asked by the Archbishop of Canterbury if our  plans for Iraq were just an example of  'empire building' by George  Bush.

He answered by saying,
  "Over the years, the United States has sent many of  its fine young men and women into great peril to fight for freedom beyond our borders.  The only amount of land we have ever asked for in return is enough to bury  those that did not  return."

You  could have heard a pin drop.
 
There was a conference in France  where a number of international engineers were taking part, including French and  American.  During a break, one of the  French engineers came back into the room saying,  "Have you heard the latest dumb stunt Bush  has done? He has sent an aircraft carrier to Indonesia to help the tsunami victims.  

"What does he intend to do, bomb  them?"A Boeing engineer stood  up and replied quietly:  "Our carriers have  three hospitals on board that can treat several hundred people; they are nuclear  powered and can supply emergency electrical power to shore facilities; they  have three  cafeterias with the capacity to  feed 3,000 people three meals a day, they can produce several thousand gallons of  fresh water from sea water each day, and they  carry half a dozen helicopters for use in  transporting victims and injured to and from  their flight deck.  We have eleven such ships; how many does France have?"

You could have heard a pin drop. 


A U.S. Navy Admiral
  was attending a naval conference that included 
Admirals from the U.S., English, Canadian, Australian and French
Navies.  At a cocktail reception, he found himself standing with a large
group of officers that included  personnel from most of those countries.

Everyone was chatting away in English as they sipped their drinks but a French  admiral suddenly complained that, whereas  Europeans learn many languages, Americans  learn only English. He then asked, "Why is it that we always have to speak English in these conferences rather than speaking  French?"

Without hesitating,  the American Admiral replied, "Maybe it's because the Brit's, Canadians, Aussie's and Americans arranged it so you wouldn't have  to speak  German."
 

You could have heard a pin drop.
  
 
AND THIS STORY FITS RIGHT IN WITH THE ABOVE...

Robert Whiting,  an elderly gentleman of 83, arrived in Paris by plane. 
At French Customs, he took a few minutes to locate his passport
 
in his carry on.


"You have been to France before, monsieur?" the customs officer asked  sarcastically.Mr. Whiting admitted that he had been to France  previously.

"Then you should know enough to have your passport ready."

The American said,  "The last time I was here, I didn't have to show it."

"Impossible.  Americans always have to show their passports on arrival in France!"

The American senior gave the Frenchman a long hard look.  Then he 
quietly explained, ''Well, when I came ashore at Omaha Beach on D-Day in 1944 to  help liberate this country, I couldn't find a  single Frenchmen to show a passport  too."


You could have heard a pin drop. 

 

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This was submitted by Pete Banholzer
WHY IS IT THAT SOME UNDERSTAND WHAT MATTERS ABOUT AMERICA ... 
AND THEY RESPECT IT SO DEEPLY THAT THEY ARE WILLING TO MAKE THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICES FOR IT?
AND TOO MANY OTHERS ... HAVE NO CLUE?

This slide show consists of photos taken at a formal dinner at the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Quantico, VA.
It is a beautiful presentation of the honor, commitment and pride today's heroes share with yesterday's.  Poignant words...

If you know a Marine or a soldier of any branch of the Military (of any age) make sure he or she sees this. Wouldn't hurt if all other Americans saw it too!
If you get a black screen at first, be patient.  It'll come up.

Here is one submitted by Jim Hafer.  Take a minute and click the link to view it.

Angel Flight

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 The Woman Marine Pilot

 

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The teacher gave her fifth grade class an assignment:  Get their parents to tell them a story with a moral at the end of it. 

The next day, the kids came back and, one by one, began to tell their stories.  There were all the regular types of stuff: spilled milk and pennies saved.  Then only Janie was left.  "Janie, do you have a story to share?" asked the teacher.

"Yes ma'am.  My daddy told me a story about my Mommy.  She was a Marine pilot in Desert Storm, and her plane got hit.  She had to bail out over enemy territory, and all she had was a flask of whiskey, a pistol, and a survival knife. 

She drank the whiskey on the way down so the bottle wouldn't break, and then her parachute landed her right in the middle of 20 Iraqi troops.  She shot 15 of them with the pistol, until she ran out of bullets, killed four more with the knife, till the blade broke, and then she killed the last Iraqi with her bare hands.”

"Good Heavens,” said the horrified teacher.  What did your Daddy tell you was the moral to this horrible story?"

"Stay away from Mommy when she's been drinking." 

 Posters from the web.

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Very Touching Story


He   writes:  My lead flight attendant came to me and   said, "We  have an H.R. on this flight."  (H.R. stands for human remains.)
"Are they military?" I  asked.  


'Yes',  she said.  

'Is there an escort?' I asked.  

'Yes, I already assigned him a seat'.   

'Would you please tell him to come to the flight deck. You  can board him early," I said..  


A short while later, a young army sergeant entered the  flight deck.  He was the image of the  perfectly  dressed soldier.   He introduced himself and I asked him about his  soldier.  The escorts of these fallen soldiers talk about them as if they are still alive and still with us.    

My soldier is on his way back to  Virginia', he said.  He  proceeded to answer my questions,  but offered no words on his  own.  

I asked him if there was anything I could do for him and  he said  no.  I told him that he had the toughest  job in  the  military and that I appreciated the work that he does for the  families of our fallen  soldiers. The first officer and I got up  out of our  seats to shake his hand.  He left the flight deck to find his seat.  

We completed our pre-flight checks, pushed back and  performed an uneventful departure.  About 30 minutes into our flight, I received a call from the  lead flight attendant in the cabin. 'I just found out the family of the soldier we are carrying, is on board', he said.  He then proceeded to tell me  that the  father, mother, wife and 2 - year old daughter were escorting their son, husband, and father home.  The family was upset because they were unable to see the container that the soldier was  in before we left. We were on our way to a major hub at which the family was going to wait four hours for the connecting flight home to Virginia.  

The father of the soldier told the flight attendant that  knowing his  son was below him in the cargo compartment  and being unable to see  him was too much for him and  the family to bear.  He had  asked the flight attendant if there  was anything that could  be  done to allow them to see him upon our arrival. The family   wanted to be outside by the cargo door to watch the soldier  being taken off the airplane.. I could hear the desperation in the flight attendants voice when he  asked me if there was anything I  could do. 'I'm on  it', I said. I told him that I would get back  to him.   

Airborne communication with my company normally occurs in the  form of
e-mail like messages. I decided to  bypass this system and  contact my flight dispatcher  directly on a secondary radio. There  is a radio operator in the operations  control center who   connects you to the telephone of the dispatcher. I was  in direct  contact with the dispatcher. I  explained the situation I had  on board with the family  and what it was the family wanted.   He said he  understood and that he would get back to me.    

Two   hours went by and I had not heard from the dispatcher.   We  were going to get busy soon and I needed to  know what to tell the  family.  I sent a text  message asking for an update.  I  saved the return  message from the dispatcher and this following is  the  text:  

'Captain,  sorry it has taken so long to get back to you. There  is policy on this now and I had to check on a few  things. Upon your arrival a  dedicated escort team will  meet the aircraft.  The team will  escort the  family to the ramp and plane side. A van will be used to load the remains with a secondary van for the family. The family will be taken to their  departure area and  escorted into the terminal where  the remains can be seen on the ramp.  It is a  private area for the family only. When  the  connecting aircraft arrives, the family will be escorted  onto  the ramp and plane side to watch the remains  being loaded for the  final leg home. Captain,  most of us here in flight control  are veterans.  Please pass our condolences on to the family. Thanks.'  

I sent a message back telling flight control thanks for  a good job.   I printed out the message and gave  it to the lead flight  attendant to pass on to the father.  The lead flight  attendant was very  thankful and told me, 'You have no idea  how much  this will mean to them.'  

Things started getting busy for the descent, approach and  landing.   After landing, we cleared the runway  and taxied to the ramp  area.  The ramp is huge  with 15 gates on either side of the  alleyway.  It  is always a busy area with aircraft maneuvering  every  which way to enter and exit.  When we entered the ramp   and checked in with the ramp controller,  we were  old that  all traffic was being held for us..   

'There   is a team in place to meet the  aircraft', we  were  told.  It looked like it was all coming  together, then I  realized that once we turned the   seat belt sign off,  everyone would stand up at  once and  delay the family from  getting off the  airplane. As we approached our gate, I asked the   copilot to tell the ramp  controller we were  going to stop  short of the gate to make an  announcement to the passengers.   He did that and  the ramp controller said, 'Take your time.'    

I stopped the aircraft and set the parking brake.   I pushed the  public address button and said,  'Ladies and gentleman, this is  your Captain speaking I  have stopped short of our gate to make a  special announcement.  We have a passenger on board who   deserves our honor and respect.  His Name is  Private XXXXXX,  a soldier who recently lost his life.   Private XXXXXX is  under your feet in the cargo  hold.  Escorting him today is  Army Sergeant  XXXXXXX..  Also, on board are his father,  mother, wife, and daughter.  Your entire  flight crew is   asking for all passengers to remain in their seats to  allow the  family to exit the aircraft first. Thank   you.'   

We continued the turn to the gate, came to a stop and  started our shutdown procedures.  A couple of  minutes later I opened the cockpit door.  I  found the two forward flight  attendants crying,  something you just do not see.  I was told  that  after we came to a stop, every passenger on the aircraft stayed in their seats, waiting for the family to exit  the aircraft.  

When the family got up and gathered their things, a  passenger slowly started to clap his hands..   Moments later more passengers  joined in and soon  the entire aircraft was clapping.  Words  of 'God  Bless You', I'm sorry, thank you, be proud, and other kind   words were uttered to the family as they made their  way down the  aisle and out of the airplane. They were escorted down to  the ramp to finally be with  their loved one.   

Many of the passengers disembarking thanked me for the announcement I had made. They were just words, I told them, I could say them over and over again, but nothing I say will bring back that brave soldier.   

 

   

 

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