October 27, 2010
Today was one of the most memorable in my journey. It began with an early meeting with Alabama Gov Bob Riley. The governor was incredibly gracious and in awe of my accomplishments thus far. We had quite a lengthy chat about the states fallen heroes and the mission Honor and Remember. He and the state’s adjutant general put their complete support to my efforts and welcomed the opportunity to help continue the cause.
Following our meeting we walked out to the front steps of the capitol where a ceremony for Alabama fallen heroes was arranged. Sue Dahrouge and Marynell Winslow organized a tremendous event with full regalia. The governor, The Adjutant, active military, Patriot Guard Riders, News media and many many Gold Star families. It was a beautifully moving ceremony beginning with the governors comments, my mission message, flag presentations in honor of SPC Johnathon Milllican, 2007 Iraq and SFC James Bunn, 1968 Vietnam and concluding with a proclamation to Honor and Remember from the state.
Truly humbling and memorable experience as I was so warmly welcomed and accepted. This is one of the most calm and less stressed state capitols I have visited with not a guard or scanning machine in site. Interesting to visit and walk around unencumbered.
Following the ceremony the governor invited everyone inside the Capitol to view the Wall of Honor he had commissioned. Seven more names were added today. Then all of the families were invited to lunch provided by the state American Legion headquarters. This was a wonderful time of getting to know more closely each family and their sons, and continue to grow my amazing family.
Later I was taken to the home of Howard and Carol Payne where I will be spending the night. I was invited to the church for Wednesday night service, Vaughn Forest Baptist church, where to a congregation of over 200 I was able to share the message. The acceptance was overwhelming, as I have always believed that the churches were a wonderful place to bring a healing testimony.
Tomorrow: 200 mile drive to Atlanta, meetings and interviews.