August 5, 2010
Woke up at 530am this morning to conduct my weekly interview with Tony Macrini on WNIS back in Norfolk, VA. Tony has become a great friend as he has embraced my vision and helped to get us as much awareness as possible. Every Thursday morning on WNIS at 730 eastern, listen online if you can.
Today was another special day in that a flag presentation was planned for 10am in the Utah state capitol. I was getting nervous a bit because our flag was shipped and supposed to arrive Wednesday but hadn’t. With our ceremony beginning at 10am the flag did arrive at 9:58. Whew. This is a very beautiful rotunda and chairs with a podium were all set up to begin. We had many Gold Star families in attendance as well as representatives from the community. Just before we were ready to begin we got word that the governor would participate. I will tell you that this made a huge difference to the GSFs and when he came out spoke about 20 minutes on honor and sacrifice. The governor signed my pledge book and had to move forward in his day. It was an honor for us to have him participate. Thank you to Rep Kerry Gibson for inviting him out.
I was able to share my message of remembrance to the crowd and then the most important presentation of a personalized flag to the Rougle family in honor of SSG Larry Rougle, to his mom and dad, his wife and to his precious daughter Carmen. This is what it is all about. I have to say the back held up until the end and then hit me hard. Much more ice needed. I am making people uncomfortable around me.
Erin Julian was also in attendance all the way from Michigan with daughter Liz in tow. It was great to see her again since it had been a month from the MI ceremony. Afterwards her extended family took me to lunch and now I am settling in for the night in a hotel, with ICE.
Tomorrow: The 7 hour long drive to Boise, ID
PS. I have driven nearly 12,000 miles, so the 17 I predicted will most like turn toward 25,ooo, circling the globe when I reach Arlington.