November 14th – 5 East
Past Luncheons – November 14th – 5 East
“My Son by another Mother.”
us Marine Moms and Dads have known each other since boot camp, others
since our sons’ first deployment. Maybe
our kids grew up together in the same neighborhood and joined the
Marine Corps together. Still others we have met along the way through
one support group or another, whether it is from the MarineParents.com
site, a Yahoo group, or from homecomings, local events, a Blue Star
Mothers chapter, or, yes, even chasing down a car in town with a USMC sticker
on it! We are everywhere. It’s
just the hooking up with each other that may difficult sometimes.
we have in common is we claim every Marine we meet as our own, and
we do our best to “fill in” for the parents who can’t be there for
is that every military family is connected to another military family.
It really does help with the roller coaster ride.
you make will last a lifetime.
luncheon had a very special feeling surrounding it. The good energy and LOVE drifted out of 5 Center and through
the halls of 5 East along with the aroma of barbecue chicken warming
in the crockpots.
“Is that barbecue chicken I smell? That’s my son’s favorite!”
and Lew coordinated this month’s luncheon and did an outstanding job!
Green Beans (gone)
Macaroni & Cheese (gone)
Potato Dish (gone)
Tray (very little left)
Tray (one spoonful left)
& Olives (gone)
(one bag left)
(one of 2 trays left)
crackers (little bit left)
pies ( a few slices left)
pies (a few slices left)
And Truffles! (GONE!)
inch of the table was covered with food. It was amazing!
we were setting up, I kept hearing Lew thinking out loud, “One step
at a time, one step at a time.” It is organized chaos when we first
arrive and he was trying to figure out the best way to set up the
crockpots and electrical cords. We had three new volunteers with us
and I was concerned that things would be really confuzzled, but everything
went very smoothly, other than a few things we had no control over,
and they were easily taken care of.
Bob made the smoothies. Diane served the
Shirley cut the pies and Katie and Gladys greeted our guests outside of the luncheon room and
helped pass out the niftie gifties.
from Touch of Relief arrived and immediately set up his massage chair
to give free seated massages to the patients, families, and staff.
At one point a doctor stopped in to make sure his patient, a double
amputee, was in safe hands in the massage chair. He was!
Janet and Lew knew from when their son was at Bethesda brought by
a church group that will be doing a luncheon in December to show them
how we set up the room. It was a very special reunion for Janet and
Dad who lives near the hospital was visiting a patient from his son’s
battalion, which turned out to be the battalion that one of our volunteer’s
son is with. It always amazes me when something like this happens
at a luncheon.
all of the names we had been asked to look for and made sure everyone
received a pantry bag and encouragement notes, along with the Silver
Star Banner applications. Unfortunately we weren’t able to personally
make it down to ICU, but niftie gifties and notes were passed on to
some patients there by way of the ICU staff for us.
you send iPods to any of the military or VA hospitals or rehab centers?
Who uploads the music onto them? A mom told us about how much her
son missed his laptop, iPod, and his other belongings left behind
Afghanistan. They will eventually catch up with him. In the
meantime, someone gave him an iPod at the hospital, but there was
no music loaded onto it.
did not know how to do it and he was unable to do it because of his
injuries. She was pretty sure it could be done there at the hospital,
and I am sure it will happen. She suggests that when people donate
to load them with music, label it with the songs, and then it would
be ready for the recipient.
bags from Bayside Quilters were available to anyone who wanted them.
The most popular were the ones made from Marine fabric.
had little gift bags for the moms, wives, girlfriends and sisters.
The bags were made by Bayside out of Christmas fabric and inside of
the bags were a pair of mittens or gloves, some hand lotion, and samples
of Mary Kay cleanser and lotion. Quilts from Bayside were also given
a new one for us… The leftovers from the pantry bags were left with
a Marine Dad who will pass the snacks out to the families and patients
for us. We buy by the case whenever possible and not
everything always fits inside of the gift bags. Since these were bought
for this luncheon we left the leftovers there rather than bringing
the patients will be heading down to Haley VA soon. Connections have
been made with Momma Dee to look for the Marine and his Dad after
they arrive there.
California has the head’s up to look for some former
WILL continue after they leave
friend sent along a gorgeous mum for the table.
told me after the luncheon, “I didn’t talk to many patients/ families
like I have in the past few luncheons, but one mom was so excited
to see the olives … it sounds silly but her son’s favorite is olives
and he hadn’t had any in over 5 months. She put a nice amount
on his plate, but at the end I gave her the leftovers in the containers.
Who would have thought that olives would have made her Marine so happy.”
what Marine Moms-Bethesda tries to bring into
when we are there for a luncheon.
you to the hospital staff, for your patience and understanding, for
helping us find the patients we had names for, and for delivering
the things we had for them.
our best to serve the patients and families first as that is our mission.
But often the families come in late. So… I was taking them from the
back of the line to the head of the line, in front of the staff.
Families live on fast food, patients live on hospital food.
you, Staff, for your patience and understanding about that, too.
the staff came back a little later with a printed out “Thank You”
so sweet and will be cherished!
We had finished packing up and were getting ready
to leave and in fact Lew had already left, when I remembered to take
a picture of everyone. One of the Marine Moms there with her son was
in the room with us and offered to take it for us. Thank you sooo
Luncheon Crew ~
Katie, Janet, Shirley, Diane, Bob, Jane,
Job WELL Done!
you to the “Elfs” as well. We could not do this without your support!
one of us Marine parents hears of another Marine parents’ loss, a
piece of our heart goes out to them. This is especially true when
we or our son knows the family or the Marine personally.
luncheon was sponsored in part by an Army/Marine Mom who lost her
not long ago.
son was in the same Battalion as Janet and Lew, Shirley and Diane’s
this sort of connection between these Marine parents at this luncheon
was something very, very special.
you Janet, for placing this poster on the wall leading into the luncheon
you, Valerie, for choosing to honor Kevin in this way. I truly hope
we honored his memory in a way that was worthy of his service and
his ultimate sacrifice.
We must never forget the sacrifices made by our
brave young men in defense of our country. NEVER!
Supporters were recognized for their contribution to the day’s luncheon
as we always do, with a list posted at the entrance to the luncheon
from our new volunteers after the luncheon:
a wonderful day and an enormous amount of fabulous food was consumed
with gratitude. It was a unique experience.”
and heart is still trying to process all the work, food and kindness
that was displayed yesterday.
What you have started and cultivated over the years is such a special
gift for those young Marines and their loved ones. My husband
was just amazed when I was explaining to him the setup of the food,
smoothies, gifts from the quilters, the notes of encouragement.
– this is what “wowed” me.
Cinnamon Rolls someone sent along with Janet and Lew.
the fortitude of the wounded, determined to heal as fast as they can,
strength of the families caring for their loved ones.
next time, continued prayers for our military and their families.
where it is due – The saying “My Sons by another Mother” is a take
off on a quote by
Home 3/1 Marines!
Thundering Third Returns
on by Suzan – Excellent information here for wounded warriors and
Centers of Excellence