Saturday, May 08, 2004

I remember Kevin when he was about 14 years old. He had been rushed to the hospital with his appendix in trouble. As they did surgery to remove this little organ ... it burst. This, as you know, is not good. He was a very sick young man for a long time. He scared us. You can die from a burst appendix.

Well, Kevin did not die. He got well and went on to resume his junior high and then high school career. He married a lovely young woman named Jenny. Together they have produced two great kids. Life was good.

And then the government called. He got the message 15 months ago. He did what all good soldiers do. He responded by packing up his stuff and hitting the road. Kevin is a good looking, strong young man. He is the quiet type. But that trait belies what resides deep within him. Because deep inside my friend Kevin ... he is a hero.

He is at home tonight. He is safe and sound. His children are down the hall. His wife is in his arms. And Kevin ... Kevin is not in Iraq. For the first time in a long time he is home. It was good to see him this afternoon. Good to stand in his front yard waving an American flag as he pulled into the driveway. Good to hug him and tell him that I love him and am glad he is safe. Good to put my hands on his hard shoulders and pray a prayer of thanksgiving for his safety. It was just all good.

Welcome back, Kevin. Thank you for doing the job. Thank you for laying it on the line to protect my family and I. Glad to have you home, my friend.