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My wish for CHRISTmas

Published on December 21, 2018 under AMA
My wish for CHRISTmas

My wish for CHRISTmas


Now that I have reached and exceeded the age of 70 years my wishes for Christmas have changed dramatically. Instead of the usual gifts of tools, sports equipment or clothing I have finally decided I wanted something even better. Peace on Earth and goodwill toward all.


I know I’m living in a dream world hoping what I wish for at Christmas comes true.


Our world and country are driven by power, greed and narcissism over and above what we can ever imagine.


In my world, be it ever so small and simple, I believe if you as an individual do truly believe in the one most holy God then you will bring forth that hope for a better world.


In my mind, God reigns supreme and his commands should be followed, not circumvented due to your or my personal agenda.


I admit I don’t attend church as much as I should, nor do I use the proper language should something I’m working on fails. However, deep in my heart I speak to God numerous times throughout the day asking for guidance and to apologize to him for my many shortcomings.


My life is based on my dog tags I wear when I leave my home. I have a cross, a photo of my grandson and one of my military dog tags. They represent God, family and country, which drives my life. For those who believe life is different from my approach to be a human being, that’s alright. We all have our opinions as to how we should live. It is your right according to the First Amendment, just remember it is also your right to decide where you will spend eternity.


On Saturday, 150 or so motorcyclists gathered before dawn in a light rain to participate in the annual Wreaths Across America Escort. We were aided in our escort by Manatee Sheriff’s Office, Florida Highway Patrol as well as the Sarasota Sheriff’s Office. We escorted three semis carrying 14,000 plus fresh cuts wreaths which were heading for placement at Sarasota National Cemetery.


Since 2012 folks in Sarasota and Manatee counties have stepped forward to insure funds for the wreaths were available for every headstone and columbarium at the cemetery.


I especially want to thank Meshia Richardson (Wreaths Across America Sarasota National Cemetery Coordinator), John Rosentrater (Sarasota National Cemetery Director) and his staff, Mike Dengel, his son Michael (4 D’s Trucking) and Jon Ritscher (Schneider Trucking) for transporting our wreaths at their own time and expense. Many thanks to Bill Franklin local Patriot Guard Ride Captain for putting the escort together. And last but not least, the 1,000 plus people who came to the cemetery to place the wreaths.


The Lord has blessed Sarasota and Manatee counties with people who share their love for the military and those who have served to protect us over the years.


Nationally there were 1.8 million wreaths laid at 1,642 cemeteries on Saturday. That could not have happened without the support of hundreds of thousands of folks who share a common bond, support for our military and their families even after they have passed.


God bless my readers, and may you have a very Merry CHRISTmas and a joyous New Year.


Terry Longpre