71 Year Old ElliptiGO Rider Travels 3,000 Miles for Injured Veterans

Picture from Rick’s blog

Rick Hermelin, a former active duty Marine jumped on his cross training running machine, the ElliptiGO, and in 100 days raised awareness and funds for the Semper Fi Fund,a 501(c)(3) nonprofit set up to provide immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families.

Rick’s one-man, self-supported adventure, as described on the Semper Fi Fund page, departed Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island, S.C. on March 23, 2012, and finished at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, CA on Saturday, June 30, 2012.

The meaningful coast-to-coast finish aboard MCRD (Marine Corps Recruit Depot) commemorates Rick’s service in the United States Marine Corps, while also honoring the Semper Fi Fund, who will be on site to celebrate his finish.

As of this morning, according to Rick’s blog, the total of $10,622 was raised for injured veterans. Keep the donations coming. You can donate here. Thank you Rick for a great effort! You rock!

Love You More Than You Know supports the Semper Fi Fund, giving a portion of the proceeds from the sale of this book to benefit our wounded veterans.

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Love You More Than You Know is a Finalist !

Thank you for the nomination! Love You More Than You Know is a finalist for the 2012 Milbloggies (6th Annual) Best U.S. Military Parent Blog Award. Milblogging.com currently has 3,357 military blogs in 47 countries with 19,735 registered members.

I am committed to continue bringing you true stories of our heroes in uniform, sharing with you the bravery and sacrifices that our troops and their families make everyday for all of us. You are invited to share your story about your soldier here at Love You More Than You Know by being a guest blogger.

Other categories for blog awards include: U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Military Veteran, U.S. Reporter, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps, U.S. military Supporter, and U.S. Military Spouse. Check out all the finalists. Winners will be announced at the Sixth Annual Milibloggies this weekend.

April Fool’s Day, No Joke

Matthew Meyrose and his Mom, Jayne White

Jayne White wrote a story for Love You More Than You Know about her son, Matthew Meyrose. When Matthew first told his mother that he joined the Army, the date was April 1, 2004.  Jayne said, “This was no joke!” After training as a Combat Engineer, Matthew was deployed to Afghanistan on March 3, 2006.

Jayne had mixed feelings about her son leaving the country. “Guilt because I suggested he join the Army, apprehension, then calm as I prayed for him and all those serving.” While at work, Jayne would receive calls from Matthew and would marvel at “how close” he sounded.

Then came the call, at 8:30 am on Saturday, April 1, 2006 (April Fool’s Day–no joke again). Not even a month out of country, Matthew, 24 years old at the time, was wounded and in the hospital. An IED went off under his Humvee.  Luckily, he wasn’t critical. Matthew sustained short-term memory loss and his right arm had a muscle concussion.

After four long months, the doctors realized that Matthew’s arm needed more than just time to heal. Matt was flown to Germany to receive more medical attention.

Matthew became a sergeant by the time he was done serving his country on September 30, 2007. He is now a drill sergeant in the Army Reserves, and studying to become a fireman. Thank you Matthew for your service. May your April Fool’s Day be calm and relaxing.

Recon: Homefront from the Pentagon Channel

The Pentagon Channel came to Cleveland and did a documentary  about Love You More Than You Know. They combined our story with the story of two teenage girls reaching out to help their peers. To watch the  podcast, click on # 56 Recon:Homefront in iTunes. You too can make a difference. Support our troops.

Talking Points- How Our Book Started a Conversation About War

My friend, Liz Kennedy was in Michigan last week visiting friends and family. Gus, who just returned from Afghanistan was sharing sobering details about his tour with Liz. She had given his mom a copy of Love You More Than You Know while Gus was deployed.

Gus also read our book and Liz said he was on the edge of his seat using details from the book for a way to start a conversation about his experiences at war.

Writing our stories allowed us to make sense of our raw emotions, from our deepest fears to our greatest hopes when our children were deployed. Sharing our stories bonded us to other mothers and we no longer felt alone.

I am grateful that our stories can help start a conversation. We can never understand what our soldiers went through, but we love and deeply care for our veterans. God bless you Gus and thank you for your service.

Dog Cries for Joy

Hank all dressed up for Halloween.

Not only human family members miss our deployed troops. This sweet video shows a dog crying for joy when reunited with its owner, who just returned from a year long deployment. (Look for the sign in the video.)

In Love You More Than You Know, Mary is the author of the story “My Heart and Hank”.  Mary tells how she  took care of her deployed soldier’s dog, Hank. ” The last time my son was on leave, Hank ran up to him and licked him frantically and never left his side. It was obvious there was a bond between them that would never change. No orders, deployments, distance, or even the enemy can ever change the fact that Hank sits and waits until his master comes home.”

Women Left Waiting Review

Jessica from Sugar in My Grits is hosting the Women Left Waiting event and said this about Love You More Than You Know:

I finished the book last night. Loved it! All of the stories were wonderful and being an Army Wife, I still took plenty away from each. There are stories that make you shed tears and moments that will leave you almost breathless.

I highly recommend it to anyone who has someone close to them deployed. I would also like to recommend it to anyone who works with, lives close to, or is just wanting a better understanding of the sacrifice these families are making.

Thank you Jessica for your kind words.

Giving All for the USA

Mary Jane Kashkoush & Mike

I mailed a letter today at the post office in Chagrin Falls, Ohio.  On May 7, 2008, President Bush signed Public Law no-224, naming the Chagrin Falls Post Office in honor of Sergeant Michael Kashkoush. We lost this wonderful man to war. My daughter, Meme went to school with Michael.

Mary Jane Kashkoush is our own gold star mother.  Her story “Perchance to Dream” is in Love You More Than You Know. Her beloved son, Sergeant Michael Kashkoush lost his life in Iraq. Michael was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart.

Mary Jane said, “This process of grieving and reconnecting to life is like trying to tune into a station on a car radio, the dial-in-knob kind, with static coming over the airways. . . My heart aches. . . Home is where the heart is, and my Mike is always with me.”

We remember the sacrifices and pray for the gold star families.

Women Left Waiting Blog Event

Writing our stories bonded us together and we no longer felt alone! Check out this blog event for free prizes including copies of Love You More Than You Know. We would love to hear and share stories from all women left behind about your deployed loved ones. Send stories to storiesfromwomen@gmail.com.

Sugar  in my Grits will be hosting the “Women Left Waiting” event from:
May 16th – May 30th. Being a Military Spouse myself I am familiar with the sacrifice, that we all make, that many times goes unnoticed. With my blog growing each week I have been wanting to hold a blog event & what better group of people to reach out to than those women left waiting for their military loved ones to come home. Busting their butts, trying to keep it all together, even when all they want to do is fall apart. This event is for all women related to someone serving in our US Military. This includes Grandmothers, Mothers, Sisters, Spouses, Fiances, & Girlfriends.