February 18, 2016

Always smiling100_05502100_0599 Grief is an odd emotion to understand. It is deeply personal. It has been my experience that grief never truly goes away. It changes but it is always there.

Our family has continued to grow and too even blossom. I still don’t (completely) understand all of the whys. However, I am finally at peace with The Event.

To see the love and joy that is in our family now truly blesses my heart.

We will never forget that tragic night when we were notified of Buddy’s death. I can still hear and see it all in my mind’s eye.

I remember you Buddy. I remember you well, my friend.

“I have come to understand that, sometimes the Lord calls our loved ones home when they are ready, not when we are ready.” Pastor Tracie Baird



November 29, 2012

Can anyone… anyone at all, tell me what is wrong with reforming the existing entitlement programs in the US?

Please don’t misunderstand.  I think that there are seasons when individuals or families may need some assistance to get through a rough patch.  But honestly, too much of these entitlements are viewed (by some) as just another way of life (long term or forever).

I think long term assistance robs a person of who they were created to be.  Yes, I do believe that there are a growing number of people willing to settle for what they can get the easiest way they can get it.

The physically disabled.  The mentally ill.  Those are the only two (I hate to use the term but) classes of citizens who deserve to receive long-term government assistance.  Period.

So, once again, please explain why the US Government (Democrats specifically) are so unwilling to reform the entitlement programs.

And be cordial.


May 30, 2011

Sgt. Buddy James Hughie




Entered into eternal rest serving in Operation Enduring Freedom

Afghanistan, Asia

Killed in Action (KIA) with a single shot from a Taliban sniper while rendering aid to Afghan Army Nationals.  Sgt Hughie went where no other dared.  He saved the lives of two men who were of a different race, a different religion, who lived in a foreign land and they spoke a different language. In the process, his heroic actions cost him his life.  Sgt Hughie stepped out and went where others refused go.

We love him and miss him dearly.  If you have not visited  the links “Our American Hero” and “Sgt Buddy James Hughie” on this home page please take time to do so and get to know our American Hero.  He is the one we knew as Buddy, the one with the radiant white smile who was always willing to help you with whatever needed to be done.  The world is a little darker without Buddy Hughie.

Today as you storm the beaches remember those whom stormed beaches long ago.

Enjoy your freedoms for they are bought with the blood from our American Heros.

The Death of UBL (aka OBL)

May 5, 2011

Many people know of our American Hero (Sgt Buddy James Hughie) and of Buddy’s being KIA on the border of Pakistan/Afghanistan.  A number of them have asked me how I feel about the recent news of the successful mission carried out by US Navy SEAL Team 6.

Honestly I can’t say how exactly I feek about that.  The recent news from Abbottab, Pakistan has dredged up things in me that I thought I had long ago dealt with.  Anger, grief and a deep sadness.  Strangely, my first thought upon hearing the news was, “How sad for his children and grandchildren.”  Can you believe that?!  Then I felt guilty for feeling anything buy “HOORAY, HE’S DEAD!”  The Number One Terrorist in the world was a hideous human being.  No doubt or question about that.  His mind set and actions has caused untold numbers of people all over the world an unmeasurable amount of anguish.   Still, I can’t help but feel some compassion for his (innocent) children and grandchildren.  I thought, “another daddy gone.” 

All of us who claim the Christ as our Savior… how radically could the world have been changed if that one individual had been captured and also become a follower of the Savior?!  Can you even imagine the termoil that would have caused around the world?   Is it  likely that would have happened had he been caught?  Probably not.  Was it possible?  Well, that depends on who’s god you worship.  If you worship the god that required you to kill people who do not worship the same way you worship than it would never happen.  However, if you worship ad serve the One True God then yes, it certainly was possible.

Am I glad he isn’t around to plan and carry out more terrorit plotws against even more innocentws?  Abolutely!  But I can’t say I’m actually glad he is dead.

I must admit though… I never once prayed for that terrorist.  Not even once.  Sure, I pray (occassionally) for terrorsts.  I pray that they too will come to know Truth.  And if they don’t that they not be able to cause other’s harm before they come to THE Truth.

I know my thoughts and opinions are not very popular.  So what.

As for as releasing the pictures.  I don’t believe they need to be officially released.  They will eventually be leaked by someone.  I don’t need to see them either.  Our lives (my family) have not changed from this week to last.  There will be some other nut-job to fill his shoes that thinks their god needs them to kill for him.  How powerful is your god if he requires you to go around and kill those whom he created?


March 2, 2011

For quite some time now I’ve been seeing SPEEDEE OIL CHANGE commercials on TV claiming that they are “Home Town Heroes.”  Heroes?  Really?

A few months ago I stopped by one of the local franchises to chat with the franchisee about the commercial but he/she wasn’t in.  I have a nice memorial on the back of my van honoring our son-in-law (Sgt Buddy James Hughie) and pointed it out to the manager on duty.  After saving the lives of two wounded comrades our American Hero was killed by a Taliban sniper while working on the third.  For his selfless acts of bravery under fire, Buddy was posthumously awarded two Bronze Star medals with Valor and a Purple Heart medal.

I have been growing more and more concerned about the use of the term “Hero.”  Especially as it relates to those using it for monetary gain.  To me (personally) it just seems inherritantly wrong for anyone to tout themself as a hero so they can put money in their pocket.  I mean in order to be truly heroic you should do something without expecting anything in return.  You know… make some sort of sacrifice.  Not, come on in and we will charge you $35.99 to change your oil and “save” your engine.

So anyway, I stopped by another SPEEDEE OIL CHANGE today.  I went in and there were two people behind the counter.  I thought they both looked familiar so I asked them if they were the “Home Town Heroes” I had seen on TV.  They said they were.  I then asked if I could speak with either or both of them privately.  Steve (the manager) nodded affirmatively and walked outside.  I introduced myself and then handed him a laminated card that has Buddy’s picture on it with the following verbage on it.

In Loving Memory of


Husband, Father, Son and an

American Hero

October 23, 1981 – February 19, 2007

Entered eternal rest serving in

Operation Enduring Freedom

Afghanistan, Asia

Steve took a quick glance at it and started to hand it back to me.  I told him to keep it and asked that when he had the time to Google Buddy to see what a remarkable hero he was.  I then explained that I was bothered by their advertisement that they were “Home Town Heroes.”  I asked how they could use the term “hero,” further stating that it cheapens its real meaning for people like our son-in-law.  Steve replies with something like, “hero” has been used for a long time.  What about the kid who has on a T-shirt saying his dad is his hero.  I replied that the kid’s dad has likely made sacrifices for his child and in all likelihood earned the right to be  called “hero.”  We went back and forth for a minute or two with silly stuff like that.  Here is my favorite part;

Steve:  What about the old lady who comes in here with a broken down car?  She can’t go see her family.  We fix her car and she gets to go see her family.  Don’t you think we are heroes to her?

Me:  Seriously?  That’s stretching it a bit don’t you think?

Steve:  Well I think you’re stretching it!

Me:  Wow. (turning to walk away)

Steve:  Have a nice day!

People like Steve and companies who use the term “Hero” in their marketing campaigns to put money in their pockets…. Well, to me, they are War Profiteers!  Our town has a somewhat large populous of military families and for SPEEDEE OIL CHANGE and others to try to push those emotional, patriotic buttons for financial gain (to me) is just despicable!

So, go anywhere but SPEEDEE OIL CHANGE to have your oil changed and car maintenance.  This is one family of a TRUE AMERICAN HERO who would certainly support you doing so!

Veterans Day 2010

November 11, 2010

Today is the official day to recognise the individuals who have served the USA by putting on military uniforms and (in most cases) going into harms way to preserve our way of life.

As a child I remember looking at the pictures of my dad in his army uniform.  My dad served in the European Theater during WWII.  While driving a jeep one day a grenade exploded behind his seat.  Dad carried shrapnel in his back for the rest of his life.  Understandably he always had back issues.

One thing I think most people don’t realize is that during WWII Uncle Sam gave free cartons of cigarettes to those men and women in uniform.  I guess they figured they needed something to help calm their nerves.  I suppose that there are a number of those same veterans who got hooked on the nicotine who later died on the battle field of lung cancer.  But that is complete conjecture on my part.

I, myself,  served seven years in the US Navy.  I went to Orlando, FL for bootcamp with a friend from highschool but we were almost immediately seperated.    I was stationed at Cecil Field, FL, Meridian, MS and Charleston, SC.  However, I was mostly in the aviation wing of the Navy and made three cruises on the USS John F. Kennedy (9, 11 & 13 months).  There’s something unique about sailing the Medeteranian Ocean with five thousand of your “closest friends.”  The squadron I was in was at Cecil Field and we wold go to Norfolk, VA to catch the Kennedy.   In fact, the outfit I was stationed with was VA-46.  We flew A-7 Corsairs (a single-seater, single engine, attack jet).   I worked on the flight deck as the Oil King during the first cruise.  However, after being nearly blown overboard by the exhaust of and F4, during night-opps in the North Atlantic, I decided office work would better suite me.   Our squadron was involved in the Arab, Israeli conflict in 1973?  In fact one of our aircraft was nearly shot down.  It received a projectile right in the nose of the aircraft.  Twelve inches higher and it would have hit the pilot in the cockpit.  Twelve inches lower and it would have gone through the engine.  And incidentally VA-46 is the same squadron John McCain served in!

I saw lots of jets crash (on deck, in the ocean, into the arresting nets).  I saw a few guys get killed by being careless.  In fact I saw a F14 roll off the angle deck during a landing mishap.  It floated for nearly 45 seconds before it went under with sidewinder missiles on it.  That was an exciting time.  

I can still remember all the countries we visited (Spain, Italy, Greece, France, Scotland, Jamaica, Cuba and Crete).  Scotland was my favorite because I could understand the language.  France was my favorite because of the beaches (hey, I was young and stupid then).  I was only eighteen years old the first time we pulled into port in Cannes, France.  I never realized that French women didn’t shave their arm pits until on the beach that day a topless girl raised her arm for something.  Yikes!!

I’ve been thinking about Buddy and Alexis and little Cooper a good bit lately.  Cooper will be four years old on Sunday.  He was only three months old when Buddy was killed by that Taliban sniper.  If you haven’t read about him here are some links:  Buddy was truly a remarkable young man and would have been the best daddy.  If you want a better glimpse of what (some) families go through when those two green uniforms walk up to their front doors I have written about our journey here: .  Without question the most difficult experience(s) my family has ever experienced.

My family is not special, in the sense that we are the only ones who have experienced such sudden and profound grief.  There have been hundreds of thousands of families just like ours.  Sadly there will, undoubtedly, be thousands more.

Sometimes I think about Buddy and the joys he must be experiencing in his eternal home.  On an eternal scale I think that Buddy and those (who believe in the Savior) are the ones who kind of “made out” the best.  They (in their eternal home) no longer have to deal with this fallen world.

Just think, there are Veterans right this second who are dealing with profound injuries.  Think not only about those Veterans but think of their spouses, children, moms, dads, friends and relatives.  Every one of their lives have changed… forever.  What would our life be like should we have to be the primary care giver to a profoundly disabled loved one.  God bless and strengthen each one of them.

I encourage you, my fellow citizens, seek out your local Veterans.  Really, intentionally seek them out shake their hands, ask them if you can visit with them for a few minutes.  Sit with them and listen to the story of their lives.  Contact the “nursing homes” in your area and ask them if they have any Veteran residents.  Forge a relationship with them.  Would it be so difficult for each of us to sacrifice thirty minutes of our time once a month for such a noble cause.  Bring your children and teach them what it means to go outside of their comfort zones.  Teach your children to serve those who have served and sacrificed.

There is one thing that I very often wonder about.  I see those yellow magnetic “ribbons” on automobiles that say “Support our troops” or something like that.  I wonder what that means to the person behind the wheel of that vehicle.

So I have a couple of questions if you will indulge me, please.

1.  What does it mean to you to support our troops?

2.  How many of your family members have served in uniform and which branch?

In closing I would like to say THANK YOU to all of our service men and women.  And may the Lord, God Almighty not only bless the United States of America but may He bless the multitudes of the world.

Thank you for visiting my ramblings.



November 7, 2010

smoking baby girl

The following is a glimpse into how some parents are…. well you read it and let me know what you think by leaving a comment.

Below is text that I copied/pasted from one of my Facebook friends.  I have changed the names.  Everything else is just as the commentors have written it.

CAST OF CHARAC TERS;  Haley is the daughter of Alicia.  TEEN GIRL is friends with Haley and Alicia and apparently not very fond of how Haley speaks to Alicia (her friend’s mother).

TEEN GIRL: @ Haley, I dont know you other than seeing you with Betty or at Alicias. But i just want to say that i have known Alicia for going on 2 years and she does not lie. She is an adult and doesnt have to explain her self to you. If anything she tells it like it is and you are being rude and ugly to her when all she does is …try to help people. She doesnt deserve the way you are talking/messaging her, and she doesnt have to put up with it. She doesnt let her kids talk to her like that, so why should you be any different? Again she is the adult you are not. Im sorry, but this had to be said. Hope you have a good night.    Thursday 10:48pm 

THE MOTHER: well, as Hellens mother, I know that Hellen gets angry and says things she shouldnt but I also know that I kind of understand how she feels. Its not nice to keep secrets and be the target of the secrets. It is also not nice to purchase phones… for children and have them keep it s secret from their parents. But maybe thats considered the same thing they are telling Hellen….you didnt ask so we didnt tell. As a parent, I think that is unacceptable! I shouldn’t HAVE to ask my child if someone purchased her a phone or anything else. If she doesnt have one, then maybe I, as her parent, have a reason for that. You think?    Friday at 8:19am

THE MOTHER: Personally, I love Betty and I love that she is my daughters friend. And I try to stay out of Hellens business, but I still know her business at the same time….but I feel she needs to live her life and make her mistakes, I will be here to help her through tham. But I was already a teenager….I think I’ll let her be one too. However I am not sure if Betty will be allowed to remain friends with Hellen now and if not…it will not be my doing….. Friday at 8:24am ·

TEEN GIRL:  i understand and get all of that, and like i said i dont know Hellen except for passing by. But it seems to me a child should never talk to an adult the way she did alicia. Thats just my opinon. and you can let her be a teenager and at the same time have rules. Friday at 8:39am ·

THE MOTHER:  yes, I agree. She should not talk to an adult like that AND I told her that….to her face, not on fb. But as you said you dont know Hellen, NOR do you know me. However, it sounds like you have already formed an opinin of me, but I will say that I have rules! Fortunately, they donot include lying to the parents of my childs friends or sneeking around them with the “dont ask, dont tell” theory.  Friday at 11:00am ·

TEEN GIRL let me just say that I have not formed an opinin of you, i dont know you. I was simply stating that I thought it was rude for her to talk to an adult like that.   Friday at 11:33am