Friday, January 29, 2010

Quilts of Valor

Anyone reading this may remember that back in November Leo and I attended a Returning Warrior Workshop, which was basically a free weekend seminar designed to re-aclimate soldiers who had served overseas and their spouses. I'm not sure but I think it's mainly for reservists, which is nice since they are bearing a large brunt of the deployments.

While I admire the sacrifice, I get tired of the people who say, "Oh this person shouldn't go to war because they only signed up for the Reserves to get their college paid for".

Everyone who signs up for the military knows what they could be getting into and if they don't realize it, that's hard knocks on their part.

Contrary to some beliefs (and my own thinking before I married my husband) some people like to go to war. Some people want to go because in the military that's how you get promoted. My husband is considering going for a year in Afghanistan because he knows he will make his next rank if he does.

Some people want to go because they feel it's their patriotic duty, whatever the cause.
Some people want to go to war because it's what they've trained for their whole military career. Imagine if you trained for years to run a marathon and then the race was cancelled or if you studied for years to learn a language and was told you could never speak it. Training in vain isn't a reason to go to war, but a lot of people feel frustrated not being able to put their skills to use.

Some people want to go to escape the tiny, podunk towns they come from and the military is the only employer in town. People can actually make a really decent living from a career in the military, especially if you don't want to go (or go far) in college. You can't say that about most jobs.

Some people want to go because they are nut-jobs and want to kill people.
Some people want to go because they feel guilty that other soldiers are having to bear the burden and they want to do their part to take some of that burden off their friends. It's very common among returning soldiers to feel a sense of guilt that they're going home, while others are staying behind in a war zone.

Some people want to go because they have a family to feed back home and going to war means a ton of extra pay, including hazardous duty pay.

There are as many reasons to go to war as there are not to go to war.

But that's not what this post is intended to be about. I wanted to thank a group of people in Columbus, Indiana who are taking time out of their busy lives to make quilts for the Quilts of Valor project.

This is a project begun in Delaware by a military mom who wanted to make quilts for every American soldier who has been deployed. The idea is to cover them with love.

Here's a part of the letter that we received, along with our quilt.

"We wanted you to know that this quilt was created by the members of the CCC Quilts of Valor Project to thank you for your service and sacrifice for the United States of America....To tell you just a little about us, we are a group of folks from "thirty-something" to age 93 who meet to work at the Community Church of Columbus. Some of us have made quilts for years and some of us are just learning but all of us are thinking of you. Columbus, Indiana is located about 45 miles south of Indianapolis so you can imagine both basketball and Indy Racing are popular topics in our town. We are known as the home of the headquarters of Cummins Engine Company as well as many buildings designed by famous architects."

If your heart isn't moved by that, I think you must have a heart of stone. It makes me want to join the Columbus, Indiana quilting circle................although, I could do without the basketball and the Indy Racing.

However, they aren't kidding about the famous architects, one of their library's was designed by I.M Pei (who designed, among other things, the famous glass pyramid of the Louvre museum in Paris) and they have a Jean Tinguely sculpture. It's amazing how things turn full circle since I was just at the Tinguely museum in Basel, Switzerland.

Columbus was also the hometown of Chuck Taylor, aka basketball star and shoe genius. Who knew?


  1. The group sounds very caring and inspirational.

    just wanted to say that I love you!

  2. I enjoyed this post. It's a perspective that I never considered before :)

  3. Hey thanks ladies! And an extra special big hug to Danielle!