Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Parachute Packers

S~So, I just got back from a Sales Meeting in Newport Beach, California. Yeah, I know what you are thinking... OOOOHHHH rough life. However what I did not tell you is that this time of year is what they call June Gloom. It is the time of the year when Sunny California has no sun, none whatsoever. All day and into the night the fog off the ocean is so thick that the sun can't burn it off.

So anyway, that is not what this post is about. During the first full day of the meeting they brought in a Motivational Speaker, Captain Charlie Plumb (we will call him CCP). CCP was an officer in the Navy during the Vietnam War and, five days before the end of his tour of duty, he was shot down and spent six years in a POW camp. The same camp that housed John McCain. This man's story was amazing... purely amazing! He said something that really hit home for me and our history with Clare. He talked about how one day, he was at a diner in a small town when a man came up to him and said, "You're Captain Plumb, aren't you?". CCP said yes. "You were shot down and spent six years in a P.O.W. Camp, right?" CCP once again said yes, then he asked the man how he knew. The man simply stated, "I was the one who packed your parachute."

CCP was amazed - he never even thought of the guy who packed his shoot, and saved his life. He talked about how a parachute packer is someone who selflessly gives of him or herself to help others. This parachute packer was in the bowels of the U.S.S. Kittyhawke packing parachutes for the fighter jocks, who fly the million dollar jets and get all the fame, fortune, and girls. He then said that there are many different types of parachute packers. So it made me think of all the parachute packers I have in my life. All of you reading this. My men's group at church - these guys prayed so faithfully for Clare when she was going through her surgery and every single cath. I couldn't thank them enough. Monsignor Anthony and our family and friends. You are all my parachute packers. And I don't think I thank you enough for all your unending support, prayers. and love. It's easy now as things have slowed down with Clare to forget all that you have done for us. So today I am taking a little time to thank you, all my parachute packers! (to continue on with the metaphor) Thank you for packing my parachute so, as in times of freefall, your prayers, love, and support safe lower me to the ground. Thank you!

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