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· Cool Member
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Come 1 August 2012 I will celebrate 21 years of retirement from the United States Coast Guard. I spent the best 20 years and 1 day of my life dedicated to the US Coast Guard and it's ever evolving mission. I was fortunate in that I rose through the ranks to E9. And thanks to the wisdom of the Coast Guard; even as an enlisted; I was able to command 2 US Coast Guard Cutters and 2 US Coast Guard shore stations.

The past few years I have witnessed many shipmates cross the bar. I am very fortunate that I have yet to join those shipmates on that final journey! It does cause one to ponder the past - especially when those who pass are substantially younger than you, and were more deserving of a longer life!

As Thoughts of Mothers' Day approach I am reminded of an article that someone was kind enough to share with me, an article that I read during my last change-of-command and as it turns out, my retirement ceremony. As it turned out, it was not only the most accurate, but also the most important part of any speech I ever gave in my life.

I dedicate the following to My Wife, Andrea - the Woman who raised our daughter while I was away, My Soul Mate, the Woman I will never, ever be able to make up for all she has given up for me, my country and my family. I also dedicate this to all Military wives today, in the past, and in the future.

The Military Wife

The good Lord was creating a model for military wives and was into his sixth day of overtime when an angel appeared. She said, “Lord, you seem to be having a lot of trouble with this one. What’s wrong with the standard model?”
The Lord replied, “have you seen the specs on this order? She has to be completely independent, possess the qualities of both father and mother, be a perfect hostess to four or 40 with an hour’s notice, run on black coffee, handle every emergency imaginable without a manual, be able to carry on cheerfully, even if she is pregnant and has the flu, and she must be willing to move to a new location 10 times in 17 years. And oh, yes she must have six pairs of hands.”
The angel shook her head. “Six pairs of hands? No way.”

The Lord continued. “Don’t worry; we will make other military wives to help her. And we will give her an usually strong heart so it can swell with pride in her husband’s achievements, sustain the pain of separations, beat soundly when it is overworked and tired, and be large enough to say, ‘I understand’, when she doesn’t, and say, ‘I love you,’ regardless.”

“Lord”, said the angel, touching his arm gently, “Go to bed, and get some rest. You can finish this tomorrow.”

“I can’t stop now,” said the Lord. “I am so close to creating something unique. Already this model heals herself when she is sick, can put up six unexpected guests for the weekend, wave goodbye to her husband from a pier, a runway or a depot, and understand why it’s important that he leave.”

The angel circled the model of the military wife, looked at it closely and sighed. “It looks fine, but it’s too soft.”
“She might look soft,” replied the Lord, “but she has the strength of a lion. You would not believe what she can endure.”
Finally, the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the Lord’s creation. “There’s a leak,” she announced. “Something is wrong with the construction. I am not surprised that it has cracked. You are trying to put too much into this model.”

The Lord appeared offended at the at the angel’s lack of confidence. “What you see is not a leak,” he said. “It’s a tear.”
“A tear? What is it there for?” asked the angel.
The Lord replied, “It’s for joy, sadness, pain, disappointment, loneliness, pride and a dedication to all the values that she and her husband hold dear.”
“You are a genius!” exclaimed the angel.
The Lord looked puzzled and replied, “I didn’t put it there.”

Author unknown

Whoever the author was - well the author was undoubtedly blessed with the wisdom to see who the real hero is – day in and day out.
May the Lord bless my wife!

And for what it's worth - we moved 17 times in 20 years

Stephen T. Weygandt
Master Chief Boatswain's Mate
United States Coast Guard, Retired

· Premium Member
11,539 Posts
Stephen, thank you for sharing that. As a retired Command Sergeant Major with twenty five tears of service in the U.S. Army I can only say truer words were never spoken about military wives. I met my wife after completing my combat tours in Nam. Throughout the remainder of my Army career she endured my two year unaccompanied tour in Korea, a four year accompanied tour in Germany, numerous TDYs, and my combat tour in Iraq during Desert Storm. I agree, our wives are the real heros.
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