Our club donated $250 to this event.  Read below for the details.

The weather forecast all week was for awful baseball conditions (game scheduled for 7 PM) last night beginning Thursday…70% chance of continual rain and 15-25 MPH winds. Well it did rain Thursday and much of Friday with downpours until 5:50. It turned out by 6:30 there was even a patch of blue, the game was played, the KC 135 fly-over happened, all pre-game ceremonies occurred and post-game the big screen scrolled the names and faces of the fallen while duel taps was played. A long and robust fireworks displayed came next while SMSgt Jimmy Weber sang Proud To Be An American and America The beautiful.

All that became icing. The cake was the reception and dinner for families of the fallen. Here is what your contribution helped happen:

·       In spite of the forecast and rain, 110 family members of the fallen attended including families who made long drives in the driving rain-3-8 hours away, 4-4 hours away, 3 cars-18 family members-2 hours away. Only 6 who had planned to be there were not able to make it. All others on the list attended for a total of 141.

·       Families arrived and visited, grace was said, Father Pat Malone told a story of a cross given to him by iron workers at ground zero in 2001, the 55th Vice Wing Commander-Offutt AFB made appropriate comments, the new Honor and Remember flag was introduced www.honorandremember.org and all family members will receive a flag, two of my ‘sons’. Aaron and Nick, guys who went to school with my oldest son Tate, spoke…each of them had served in Iraq and lost friends there, 8 in one case and 2 in the other, SMSgt Jimmy Weber sang, the James Taylor song, “You’ve got a friend”. We ate spaghetti.

·       My self-proclaimed job was to facilitates this gathering. There was no head table…we were a collective circle. The last item on the program was to allow time for Families of the Fallen to speak if they wished. This was done in a Quaker-Style meeting way (where silence is requested and once established, anyone wishing to speak is  invited to do so. There is no dialogue. I’ve often facilitated this process in my professional work…it can have a powerful outcome…last night it did as 8-9 family members stood and spoke. Although each were individually expressed, heartfelt comments the themes that stood out for me were these two: 1) now I know my son is not forgotten and 2) it is very good, very helpful to be among others who understand the loss of a loved one in war

·       From the dinner, we walked as a group the 1 ½ blocks to the stadium. On that walk boys scouts holding flags flanked the path, citizens lined the sidewalk too, some holding banners with the names of the fallen printed on them…there were young & old, men and women, charcoal, brown, beige, caramel and ivory, military and civilians to see a 2 minute TV report go to www.kmtv.com segment title: Military and family members remembered

·    I Hope you feel your dollars were used well.

Jim Meier
Championship Thinking Coach