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Heroes

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Background: In the year 2000, my mother gifted me a priceless and unforgettable experience. Through her generosity I was able to spend 4 months in the warm and wise embrace of my grandmother, great grandmother, great aunts and loving extended family.   I arrived in Las Marias, Yuquayquin, the village...

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Saturday, September 10th, 2016: I'm consumed by the various TV specials about the 9/11 tragedy. I'm drawn to switch channels back and forth to watch the docudramas about the attack on the twin towers and flight 93. Christine arrives from her errands and quietly sits on the couch next to...

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Learn from the Past Sara Nelson is where I got my first name. She crossed the plains with much hardship as a teenager and started to raise a family in Utah. She had young kids when her husband got called on a mission. It was planting season and she didn’t...

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Ask anyone who in their family maintains the family tree and takes the pictures at reunions and celebrations. Without hesitation, "Oh, that's my niece" or "My sister does all that". These remarkable people are the heart of every family, StoryKeepers  who preserve and manage centuries of family history that can...

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Ephraim Hanks is my 4x Great Grandfather. The new movie “Ephraim’s Rescue” shows the wintery harrowing rescue of the Martin Handcart Company.  A divine messenger asked him to help the handcart company and he went straight away to Brigham Young.  This is the rest of the story the movie doesn’t...

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The Longest Day of John Steele (Revised and Edited) Private John M. Steele (1912–1969) was the American paratrooper made famous in the movie, The Longest Day. He literally landed from the air in Sainte-Mère-Église, the first village in Normandy liberated by the Americans on D-Day, June 6, 1944. On the...

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I actually have a few hero's in my family; but, since it is Veterans Day, I think it is so important to share the stories of the members of the military in my family.  The first, would be my father-in-law, Elroy  J. Gierach.   Elroy was an 18 year old...

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            Edwin Alfonso Kapaona-Tampos, Sr. born November 16, 1948 in Mahukona, Kohala, Hawai’i, was a Master-Craftsman of Traditional Hawaiian Arts and an honorary Nakoa (Spiritual Warrior) of Pu’ukohala Hei’au on the Big Island of Hawai’i. Edwin was on the State Championship football team at Farrington High School in 1966, joined the...

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On the road…again! Afghanistan to Zambia Chronicles of a Footloose Forester By Dick Pellek   Heroes We Have Known Chau and Hahn Telling stories about other people is fraught with risk.  One risk is that they might be offended that something you have said might not be true; another risk...

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  A FATHER'S DAY LETTER TO PAPA SMITH   Dear Papa Smith,      I'm sorry to be so long in writing.  But I know you forgive my negligence.  Knowing you, Papa, you will boom out, ”Aw, shoot,”and bring up something funny.  You've always accepted me, "warts and all,”as you say...

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On Sunday, July 1, 2012 I attended church just as I always do. This Sunday was the Sunday before the 4th of July, America's Independence Day. As I listened to "America The Beautiful" being sung by the congregation, my thoughts turned to my brother, Steven. He is my hero. Steven...

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Memorial Day is a day off for most, a day of reflection for some and a day of honor for few in our society.  Let's take the time between meals at cookouts and BBQ's to reverse this list and concentrate on....The Few! They are the ones who voluntarily sacrificed for...

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So Briefly An Eagle This memoir is based on letters and telephone conversations with Messrs.  Frank Zywiczynski and Jerry Evers, and on research done by the writer in the USAF Archives.   Mr. Evers, an airline flight attendant, had the opportunity to interview French citizens who had witnessed this incident.   With...

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Today, 25th April, 2012 is ANZAC Day in Australia and New Zealand - our repective day of remembrance for both countries. It commemorates the landing of soldiers of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps at Gallipoli, Turkey on this day in 1915 to fight their opening battles in WWI...

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My love of water began early when Dad hoisted me on to his shoulders and waded out into the Pacific Ocean as it reached Queensland’s golden beaches. As he was 6’6 ½” tall, I had a bird’s eye view of the beach as he turned and warned me to “Hang...

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On the road…again! Afghanistan to Zambia Chronicles of a Footloose Forester By Dick Pellek Remembering our Patriots Memorial Day weekend, 2011 and time to carry on a recent custom of thanking veterans who served the United States, especially those who fought in bloody combat. All one has to do is...

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A mile or so north of town Cheyenne Creek ran under a bridge on US Highway 75.  It was an old bridge with ornamental concrete balustrades fencing in the sides of the highway to keep cars from plunging into the water below.  On each end of the bridge there was a...

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I knew I was caught but I was laughing so hard I couldn't breathe. And then the giant head turned around and...

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I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation. Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a...