Tori and Xander,
I wanted th you today in memory of your Dad’s friend Staff Sergeant Carletta S. Davis. She was from Anchorage Alaska and on her third tour in Iraq in less than five years. She was part of your Dads unit at Ft. Drum. She was his medic. She served in Bosnia-Herzegovina and in South Korea. She genuinely cared about your dad. She was the first person to listen to your Father regarding receiving the Anthrax vaccine booster. When he was called back for his third shot he informed her that this was going to be the third time he was receiving this vaccine booster. Her actions and consideration lead to ensuring your Dad no longer had to receive this vaccine booster while in Iraq. She went in and fixed the records so your dad could take it back to his command. She listened to your dad. She cared about your dad. Two weeks later she was killed in a IED explosion in Tal Al-Dahab, Iraq. Her dreams after the military were to be a physician’s assistant. Today marks the 10-year anniversary of her death. After her death, your father was responsible for cleanup and pickup of firearm parts in the Humvee where she died. She was a mom of three children. She is now buried in Anchorage Alaska.
Why is this important the two of you may ask? Because it was taking the time to listen and taking action that helped your Dad. It was the ability to listen and care for someone. It is the fact we never know if tomorrow we will be around to be nice to a person instead of mean. Therefore, we must always make our best effort to do and listen for others today to ensure we did our best when being with them instead of just trusting in having another tomorrow. A couple of your dad’s friends and I went to the Army Medical Museum at Fort Sam on the 28th to pay our respects to SSG. Davis. She is remembered on the memorial wall under Operation Enduring Freedom. 232 Medical Battalion Barracks commemorated her sacrifice through naming the barracks after her. I was honored to be able to share in this experience with your dad and his friends. It reminds me daily to treat others with respect and to make sure to listen to them, to be kind and patient. Because we do not know the hour in which the Lord will take us nor do we know who he puts in front of us to show us his grace and love.
Your dad and I miss you a lot and we pray that you remember to show your kindness and the Light of Jesus Christ with everyone you encounter and do. Because you never know and you want the memories of your interactions with other no matter how small are ones that show kindness, compassion, honesty and loyalty to everyone who God places in your path.