Monday Meeting — Ohio Boy Pays It Forward

This is such a touching and wonderful story about an eight year old boy and his paying it forward. We all need to follow his lead. Thank you Miles.

Soul Gatherings

Meet 8 year old Miles Eckert, a boy who finds a $20 bill in a Cracker Barrel parking lot, and see how he “pays it forward” to Ohio Air National Guardsman Lt. Col. Frank Dailey.

Video Credit: CBS Evening News; “On the Road with Steve Hartman”
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St Patrick day

I wish all a four leaf clover for the Irish luck. For the last 44 years I love March 17th and St Patrick day. My first born came in to this world on this day. I have written before about how she was 5 months old before I was able to see her. My ship had just left Pearl Harbor heading back to Vietnam when I received a message form the Red Cross that I was the proud dad of a baby girl.

We always try to see her on her birthday so we went to Kansas last Wednesday so we could spend some time with her. This morning though we had to get back to Amarillo because we had a class tonight plus Charlotte had a Symphony rehearsal. We were up bright and early gave our sweet girl a birthday kiss and hug, wished her a great birthday, and left heading home.

I know she will be reading this so I am going to take this time to let her knowP1100424 and the world know that her mother and I are so proud of how she has turned out and that we love her with all our hearts. Happy Birthday Sis. Love dad.

Birthday Cruise Day Seven (All good things must come to an end).:(

Every thing was going a lot faster than it was when we came on board ship. While I was up getting coffee the girls are getting their last shower and getting ready to leave. I went back to the cabin to help with our carry on luggage and we went up for breakfast. We heard an announcement that all the ship was waiting on was for customs to come aboard the ship and give the okay to disembark. Jeff and his family came up and joined us for breakfast while waiting for the word that we could leave. Some where around 08:00 they started the disembarking process, and they started with deck one with people carrying all of their own luggage. Jeremy’s family decided to take this option so they were one of the first ones to leave the ship. We did not get to see them before they left the ship, and it was close to 09:30 before the rest of us was able to disembark.

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When we made it down to the line to go through Customs the line was pretty long and I thought well here we go again. But a security lady came by and said if you have your passports you may enter this other line. We passed all these other people until we were almost at the custom booth. Then I heard another person saying if you do not have a passport then have your birth certificate and ID out, I thought every one was supposed to have a passport.

I got on the bus to take me to the parking lot and picked up our car then drove back to ship, picked up the luggage, and the girls. We headed off to Houston and Jeremy;s house so we could give them a good bye hug and kiss before we headed home. Jeff had stopped by there also so we were able to give all the family hugs, I told Jeff to be careful driving home, then we left for we had to take our daughter to Hobby airport. It was around 11:00 when we dropped her off and then the long drive home, we made it home safely in Amarillo around 21:00 Aah home sweet home.

Birthday Cruise Day Six an Extra Day.

Well this was supposed to be the end of our four day cruise. I woke up early as usual expecting the ship to ether be pulling up to the dock or already be there. I went up to get my last cup of coffee while on board ship. It was still very foggy P1100403and the ship was still anchored out. The time was 06:00 and we were to be out of our cabins and ready to start disembarking around 08:30. The captain announced on the intercom that the port was still closed and that we would be sitting here until the fog lifted enough for the pilot from Galveston could make it on board to guide us into port. Every one was in limbo waiting for the words that we were heading in to the dock. Some where around 10:30 the captain announced that instead of being out of our rooms we could wait in the cabins if we wanted. Charlotte and I had gone down to ours and we could tell that the steward had been there to start cleaning for the next group of people that would be coming on board, so we tried not to go in for we did not want to mess up what he had already completed. So pretty much all this time we set on the lido deck in our usual spot with the whole family. The crew was as friendly as they could be seeing as how they could not get the ship ready for the ones who were to come on board after we were gone.

It was getting around lunch time and the crew started putting out food so we could eat lunch. Guy’s Burgers opened up, The Pizza place and the taco place opened, also the buffet so we did not hurt for food. While we were anchored I never did here the fog horn going off but every once and a while I could here another ships horn. The fog lifted some a little later in the afternoon and we could see four or five tankers anchored around us. Some where around 16:00 the captain came back on and said that we were going to raise anchor and head out past the 12 mile limit so that the ship could dump its gray tank due to maritime law. He said he was announcing this so that we would not be getting our hopes up about going in to port. The ship started moving very slow and the fog horn started back to sounding every two minutes.

There were several people who needed to get to the airport to catch flights home, or needed to get home so they could go to work or school the next day. Cell phone rates was like 1.99 per min. to call from the ship. The ship said that if you need to call home, employer, airlines, etc. that you could go to your cabin and call from your room phone for no charge. I felt that they did the right thing there for even though this was not the ships fault that they could not get back to port, it was a mother nature thing. Also every one had put their luggage out to be picked up and delivered down so it could be unloaded when the ship docked, so no cloths to change into. The captain announced that all the luggage would be brought back up to the rooms for we were going to be spending another night on the ship. When we have cleaned up and got the clothes out that we needed to please set the luggage out again so the crew could pick it up again. I felt sorry for theses guys that meant double work for them and not much rest.

Even though we had already said our goodbyes to our waitress down in the dinning room we went back down for dinner. I told her that she just thought she was through with us. She took exultant care of us and gave each of us  another big hug as we were leaving. We stayed up late visiting and watching the fog go by until time to turn in. What a surprise the next morning when I looked out and saw lights out the balcony window, when I got up and looked we were docked at the pear, I have no ideal when we came into port,

Birthday Cruise Day Five

After the ship sailed from Cozumel we went down to the main dining room for dinner. The only part of the family that did not join us was Jeremy and Aubrey, They said that they were going to eat up on the lido deck. So after we finished our meal we met up with them on the lido deck and visited until bed time.

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The next morning I was up early as usual and went up for my morning coffee, it looked like it was going to be another gorgeous day. Around nine everyone decided to go to the main dinning room for breakfast.

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We had a fun day at sea and it was warm enough the kids wanted to go swimming. Of course Charlotte is like a fish out of water so she went in with them. Every since she has lost all her weight she gets cold fairly easy. Even P1100395 P1100396though the water was cold, when it comes to her kids or grand kids she will do it. They had a blast but I think the two youngest ones enjoyed the showers better than the pool, made me wonder if it was warmer than the pool.

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We noticed that it was starting to get foggy again, in fact every two minutes we could hear the fog horn. Around 1800 we went down for our last dinner in the P1100402Paris dinning room. While we were eating we could feel the ship vibrating with a rumbling noise. Every one was looking at each other wondering what was going on, I told them that the ship just dropped anchor, even though it has been years since I was in the navy I remember that sound. Shortly after that the captain came on the intercom telling us that the port of Galveston was closed due to the fog and that we can not enter the harbor until it opens again. We were to have our luggage packed and setting out next to our state room door by eleven o’clock so that it can be picked up and taken down to be off loaded when the ship docks.

Birthday Cruise Day Four

It is so hard to believe that just one week ago today we were in Cozumel Mexico. (02/22/2014) I woke up as usual before the girls so I went up to get my coffee. It was so nice and warm out side and I was able to see land off the starboard side of the ship. It was some place in main land Mexico. After having my coffee andP1100329 P1100330 some cinnamon rolls I went back to the cabin and the girls were still in bed so I went out on the balcony for awhile. Finley the girls got up and joined me.

We went up and had breakfast on the lido deck until they announced that we could get off the ship. The boys and their family’s decided to go on a shore excursion to the beach so they left right away to catch the bus. The wife and daughter went P1100334down to get dress to go ashore and do some shopping. What imagine that women, shopping, I should have known. I have been to Cozumel before so I decided I would just stay on the ship and relax, Oh yea and eat Ice cream. I tried to yell at the girls so I could get a picture of them on the pier but they could not here me so I took the picture of their backsides. I had a good time on board, I found a old movie called The Sons of Katy Elder. It has been a long time since I have seen it so I just laid back and watched it. I guess I dozed off after the movie for I did not here the girls come in P1100333 P1100335and so they took my picture in one of my favorite poses. Every one had to be back on ship by 16:00 and I knew the kids excursion ended at 15:00 so I stood out on the balcony to catch them coming back in.

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The two older grandsons came up to watch a Royal Caribbean cruise ship set sale.Then watch our ship being unhooked from the pier, make a u-turn and head back out to open waters. This was just a four day cruise so we were headed back to Galveston Texas.