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Hall of Fame
This is a good one Bucks...you might have seen it already.

The average age of the military man is 19 years. He is a short haired, tight-muscled kid who, under normal circumstances is considered by society as half man, half boy. Not yet dry behind the ears, not old enough to buy a beer, but old enough to die for his country. He never really cared much for work and he would rather wax his own car than wash his father's; but he has never collected unemployment either.

He's a recent High School graduate; he was probably an average student, pursued some form of sport activities, drives a ten year old jalopy, and has a steady girlfriend that either broke up with him when he left, or swears to be waiting when he returns from half a world away. He listens to rock and roll or hip-hop or rap or jazz or swing and 155mm howizzitor. He is 10 or 15 pounds lighter now than when he was at home because he is working

or fighting from before dawn to well after dusk.

He has trouble spelling, thus letter writing is a pain for him, but he can field strip a rifle in 30 seconds and reassemble it in less time in the dark. He can recite to you the nomenclature of a machine gun or grenade launcher and use either one effectively if he must. He digs foxholes and latrines and can apply first aid like a professional. He can march until he is told to stop or stop until he is told to march.

He obeys orders instantly and without hesitation, but he is not without spirit or individual dignity. He is self-sufficient. He has two sets of fatigues: he washes one and wears the other. He keeps his canteens full and his feet dry. He sometimes forgets to brush his teeth, but never to clean his rifle. He can cook his own meals, mend his own clothes, and fix his own hurts. If you're thirsty, he'll share his water with you; if you are hungry, his food. He'll even split his ammunition with you in the midst of battle when you run low.

He has learned to use his hands like weapons and weapons like they were his hands. He can save your life - or take it, because that is his job. He will often do twice the work of a civilian, draw half the pay and still find ironic humor in it all. He has seen more suffering

and death then he should have in his short lifetime.

He has stood atop mountains of dead bodies, and helped to create them. He has wept in public and in private, for friends who have fallen in combat and is unashamed. He feels every note of the National Anthem vibrate through his body while at rigid attention, while tempering the burning desire to 'square-away' those around him who haven't bothered to stand, remove their hat, or even stop talking. In an odd twist, day in and day out, far from home, he defends their right to be disrespectful.

Just as did his Father, Grandfather, and Great-grandfather, he is paying the price for our freedom. Beardless or not, he is not a boy. He is the American Fighting Man that has kept this country free for over 200 years.

He has asked nothing in return, except our friendship and understanding. Remember him, always, for he has earned our respect and admiration with his blood. And now we even have woman over there in danger, doing their part in this tradition of going to War when our nation calls us to do so. As you go to bed tonight, remember this shot.. A short lull, a little shade and a picture of loved ones in their helmets.......

Prayer wheel for our military... please don't break it. Please send this on after a short prayer.

Prayer Wheel

"Lord, hold our troops in your loving hands. Protect them as they protect us. Bless them and their families for the selfless acts they perform for us in our time of need. Amen."

Prayer : When you receive this, please stop for a moment and say a prayer for our ground troops in Afghanistan, sailors on ships, and airmen in the air, and for those in Iraq. There is nothing attached.... This can be very powerful....... Of all the gifts you could give a US Soldier, Sailor, Coastguardsman, Marine or Airman, prayer is the very best one.

I have alot of friends that are out in the war, and living in the US we hear about this kind of stuff all the time, mostly the bad things that the troops do or what not but not really any of the good things. They take alot of heat from the media, but I respect every single one of them.

Buckeye1 thanks for the post, because every one of them troops deserves a prayer
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Ya know, I'm a college professor, and sometimes when I get a little down on my job and my students--over-privileged, whiny rich kids with their sense of entitlement, who think I should feel grateful that they've enrolled in my course when they sleep through half the classes (when they bother to show up at all).

Then I think about these man-kids in Iraq and Afghanistan--life has given them nothing; many have had to come up tough; yet they're confronting life head-on with dignity and honor asking nothing more than the chance to bring their buddies home alive; and what they wouldn't give for the opportunity to sit in one of my classes . . .

And it always makes me feel so much worse.
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Thanks for the article. It is amazing to think of the things these "kids" do for us.

On a personal note, my brother went straight into the Marines from high school. He left school a couple of weeks early just so he could get into his MOS (I think that is what a specialty is called) in a timely manner. He skipped prom, graduation and all the parties, and my brother never missed a party in high school. He felt the Marines would help him mature. I went straight into college instead as I thought I was mature enough. I finished undergrad in 4 years and grad in 2 years. As I look back on it I was mature enough to do college, but not mature enough to go into the military straight out of high school. The commitment these men and women make is leaps and bounds above anything I did in school.
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Someone at work the other day mentioned that it's "kind of scary" that we entrust our national security and defense to a bunch of kids. Well, that may be true age-wise, but after reading things like this and hearing about what these "kids" do for us, I think we're in pretty good hands. Many of these guys have more responsibility before age 25 than a lot of American "adults" ever do, and they handle it better than most of us would.

I chose not to go into the military because I didn't want to do that, and I'm not sure I could do it. I am very glad that there are people who want to and can, selflessly picking up the slack for the rest of us to keep us safe.

Cheers to our military and to all of you BP posters who are/were a part of it.
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