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May 5

May 6, 2019

Today was humbling, but not because of the ride; the route was easy and flat today. Today was humbling because I spent it in the presence of people who had been called on to show real courage, live with fear, face death and make tremendous sacrifices in service of the rest of us. And I met the people who love, advocate for and take care of these veterans. I spent my day in the presence of greatness.

Terry Schow, former Director of Veteran’s Affairs for the State of Utah and a key champion of this and other 5-star veterans homes in the state, and his wife, June
You should read every word of this — I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Terry and June, Marino Toulatos of BHGRE Franklin Group (colleague and organizer of this trip for me) and Master Sergeant Jack Verhaal, USMC, Retired
Kellie Adams, VA Nurse Manager. I ate lunch with Kellie and asked her what her job is like. She used words like “attachment” and “love” a lot. She loves her job and the people she serves, which is probably a big part of the reason this facility is so highly rated.
Debbie Tribe, her brother, Robert Charlesworth and Tex Crawford. Jax tried to horn in on a game of cribbage and I didn’t get everyone’s names.
Amber McCloskey graciously made sure I ate, showed me to the employee lunch room and told me about the home
Jax interrupted Ron’s physical therapy session, but Ron didn’t seem to mind.
I was honored that my new friends from BHGRE Franklin Group took time out of their Sunday to welcome Jax and me to Ogden. I hope to return and spend more time with them someday. From left to right, Marino Toulatos, Nico and CeCe (Anna’s nephew and niece), Anna Jensen, Shelly Russon and Cathie McGregor Critchlow. Not pictured, because he was the photographer: Cathie’s husband, Steve. I didn’t get the beautiful dogs’ names, but as you can see, Jax was in love with Anna’s poodle.😍

Despite the fact that warfare has changed and society has changed, we are still asking warriors to make life-changing sacrifices for us and they are rising to the challenge. They take care of us, so we should take care of them; that’s the deal. I hope you’ll spread the word about K9s For Warriors and consider making a donation. It will make a world of difference for a veteran and create a fulfilling life of purpose for their canine companion.

Postscript: Getting a flat tire right as we left the veterans home added to my overall sense of humility. I had 24 more miles to reflect on the fact that a flat tire on a beautiful Utah day is as trivial as a “problem” can be.

The Denver and Rio Grande Western Rail Trail cuts through much of the Salt Lake metropolitan area.
Movin’ On

From → Utah

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