Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Wistful Wednesday: Christmas in Korea 1951 and a Quilt of Valor 62 Years Later

I was born in 1951, my first Christmas was spent at my Grandparents farm with my Mom.

My Dad was in Korea for Christmas in 1951.  He was 25 years old.

Jake Korea 1951

Sign on the Christmas Tree 1951 Korea

Season Greeting To CO.B. 5th RCT

Yuletide Greeting From Korea

Land of Lice and Diarrhea

From Murky Shores We Half Mastered

Merry Christmas You Lucky Bastard

Luckily my Dad came home in one piece, he had a shrapnel wound on his head and on his arm.

It was a tough time over there in Korea.  My Dad thinks of his experiences often especially during the wintertime.  He says some of the images are still stuck in his head after all these years.  I remember that Mom used to complain that he would wiggle his toes all night long in his sleep, he learned to do that in a foxhole in Korea during the winter to keep his toes from being frost bitten.

62 years later my Dad finally got some recognition for his time served in Korea.

I read a blog called Wyoming Breezes written by my friend Nancy.  Nancy puts together tops of quilts for the Quilt of Valor Program.  She suggested that I nominate my Dad for a quilt.  I went to the website and filled out the paperwork.

One Sunday afternoon the phone rang, it was a gal by the name of Rende…she was part of a quilting group and would be presenting the quilt to my Dad! She wanted to present it about 4 PM on the 19th of December.

I called my parents and asked them to be home and have the coffee pot on. If I could manage it then it would be a surprise for both of them.  I also called my Aunt Anna and asked her to go over and make sure they were at home that afternoon.  Mother was very curious, Dad was a little curious also especially after I asked him to change his shirt!

It was a wonderful surprise.  Aunt Anna and few of my cousins showed up and my other baby brother and his wife.  My sister and my baby brother live too far away to attend.

Rende presented the Quilt to Dad.

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It is a beautiful work of art.

Quilt of Valor

I also invited my friend Anna who is a reporter for the local newspaper, she wrote an article about my Dad and the photo made it above the fold. 

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Dad told us all “That’s the first thing I’ve gotten in 60 years.”

62 years actually.

It is never too late to say Thank You to a Veteran.  My Dad was thrilled to tears with his quilt,  I think he feels a little bit like a celebrity with all the attention…it is about time!

On this Christmas Day in 2013, I am thankful for Nancy and all the other quilters that piece together and stitch the quilts for these very deserving veterans.  I thank you on behalf of my father and all the other veterans you have honored with your stitching.

Merry Christmas!

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14 comments:

  1. Wish I could have read that article in the Enterprise. Congrats to your Dad for serving. Merry Christmas.

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  2. This is wonderful! And what a fine thing to do for our Korean War veterans. What a fine quilt, and really good people who do these sorts of things. I feel very blessed myself, just reading about it. :-)

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  3. That is so awesome. What a tribute to your father. Merry Christmas

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  4. Nancy rocks!!!!! what an awesome gift of thanks!!!!!

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  5. What a wonderful event in your family. Merry Christmas!

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  6. How fabulous! Your Dad looks tickled and that is the best part! Happy Holidays!

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  7. Thanks for sharing this about your Dad and making a meaningful presentation to him. It's the same thing here. the Korean vets are almost forgotten. You've shone a light on these vets.

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  8. What a wonderful Christmas story. I'm glad your dad finally got some recognition, and what a beautiful quilt it is.
    Merry Christmas!

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  9. Our local show Fons and Porter quilting show on PBS had one of the women help to promote this nationally. I know they didn't spearhead it but they certainly spread the word about the organization nationally. I am so glad that your dad was able to receive one of the quilts. My dad never ever felt recognized for his service. The photos are a treasure of his being in that horrible war, conflict.

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  10. My husband was in the Navy ('48-'52) and was in the Inchon landing. I met him just before he left the service. In 1993 I started quilting and have made him two quilts but didn't think about honoring his service with them. Thanks to all the veterans who have served for us anywhere during war and peacetime.

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  11. Thank you for a great story and I'm glad your dad was recognized with a beautiful quilt!

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  12. What a treasure! Bless your dad for his service, and the ladies who make the quilts and give recognition to such deserving men.

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  13. What a wonderful tribute to your Dad. I am thrilled so many could be there when the quilt was presented, and the newspaper article was icing on the cake.

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  14. What a wonderful gift for you father and to have it featured in the newspaper article! Thanking him and all the other Veterans who have served our country.

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Thanks for stopping by! I appreciate your comments! If you have a question I will try to answer it here. Connie