Blog

Displaying: 1 - 7 of 7

Thank God for Patriots

June 4th, 2015

Thank God for Patriots

Memorial Day just passed, Independence Day (4th of July) is just around the corner, and Veteran's day is just five months away. But, regardless of the celebrated holiday, love for our country should always be in our hearts.

One of the symbols we use to show our patriotism and pride in our country is the United States flag. Some call her "Old Glory". I'm old enough to remember when there were parades down town streets, or the flag went passing by, people stood - they saluted - they took their hats off - they put their hand on their heart - and they taught their children why they did all this.

Over time, some have gotten too "busy" or too "politically correct" to remember to do these things. They do it sometimes when it is convenient. We need to remember that our freedom is not a "sometime", "convenient" or "politically correct" kind of thing. Were it not for men and women willing to put their lives "on hold", or pay the ultimate sacrifice of losing their lives for their country, freedom would be something we would have to look up in the dictionary to see what it meant. We would not be living it today.

I wanted to take this time now to say "thank you" to all those who have served and those who are still serving in the name of freedom for ME. A few years ago, I wrote a poem that I'd like to share with you.


Thank God for Patriots (Carolyn Marshall © 10/14/04)

So you say you love your country
And are grateful that you’re free.
It’s reflected in the mirror
Of your life that others see.

Do you proudly wave Old Glory,
Show respect as it goes by?
Does it make your heart beat faster,
Do its colors make you cry?

Do you sing the National Anthem
With the reverence it deserves?
Do you teach by your example,
What will children from you learn?

Do you give support to soldiers,
Thank them for their sacrifice?
Do they know that you stand by them
When they pay our Freedom’s price?

If you truly love your country,
When you say your prayers at night,
Thank the Lord He gave us Patriots
Not afraid to fight the fight.

A Walk With The Last Patrol

June 4th, 2015

A Walk With The Last Patrol

Twelve men are kneeling and huddled in a circle. The camouflage, green and tiger stripe uniforms; faces painted brown, green, and black; and weapons strategically strapped over shoulders makes you think you are in a war zone. These are all Vietnam veterans, but this is not Vietnam. They are called The Last Patrol, and are here on a mission. This group of Vietnam and Vietnam-era veterans performs a "Ceremony of Remembrance" all around the country. Their mission is to keep us from forgetting. They honor and remember their fallen brothers and sisters from all past wars and conflicts and those brave men and women who are wearing our country's uniform still fighting for the liberties that we enjoy every day. The first time I experienced The Last Patrol was September 16, 1994, in Fort Myers, Florida. Ted Marshall, my husband, is a Vietnam veteran who served in the United States Air Force as a K-9 handler from 1970 to 1974. We were there that beautiful autumn day for the National POW/MIA Remembrance celebration. It was an especially somber event as The Moving Wall was also there. The Moving Wall is a traveling replica of the Vietnam Veterans National Memorial which is located in Washington, D.C., and it is etched with more than 58,000 names of those who gave their lives for our country in Vietnam.

Several members of the local chapter of Vietnam veterans knew Ted had not seen The Last Patrol's ceremony, and they anticipated his reaction. With a brother on each side of him, Ted stood in the front line of the crowd eagerly waiting for the program to begin. My husband was in good hands, so I positioned myself with my camera to get the best shots of The Last Patrol.

The loudspeakers blared, and we were propelled back in time to the 60s and 70s with music from that era, stirring words from President Johnson, and battle noise. The whoosh of the helicopters could be heard in the background. Then, The Last Patrol appeared through a haze of smoke. But those who had been in a war zone were now taking that walk again with most of their senses - they were seeing it, hearing it, and smelling it.

My heart broke when I looked over and saw Ted. His veteran brothers were holding him up. He was there again - in Vietnam - and his legs couldn't support him. The pent-up emotions from all those years of suppression were coming to the surface. He was drenched in sweat, his face was stone white, and the tears he'd held for so long were finally falling.

As the narrator continued to speak, The Last Patrol went through the motions of what could have been the last foot patrol as they were beginning to pull out of Vietnam. Suddenly, the men were all standing around a helmet on top of a rifle sticking in the ground. Taps were played, and each Patrol member stood, saluting proudly to give last respects to a fallen comrade. The Patrol concluded the commemoration with a brief introduction of their members, and then they all walked into the crowd to say "Welcome Home." I stood back and watched Ted as he embraced the brothers who had finally brought him home from his private place of pain. It was the place that only another veteran knows - or understands. It didn't surprise me when I learned shortly afterwards that he had been asked to join The Last Patrol with his K-9 partner, our German Shepherd, K.C.

My observation of the crowd that day and, more importantly, my husband, motivated me to take a look at my own patriotism. Through my early adult years, I lived a self-induced, "patriotically-sheltered" life. There were wars and conflicts being fought, but I remained distant. I guess I had convinced myself that since nothing ever happens on our soil, I was safe. I ignored the news because it was "too depressing." Unfortunately, that's still the mindset of so many people today - even after September 11, 2001.

My journey into the reality of what Freedom really means but, more importantly, what it costs, began September 16, 1994. Every time The Last Patrol performed, I went with them as their photographer. My eyes and heart were opened to the suffering and sacrifice of veterans and their families. Through tears, smiles, and embraces, they shared their "secrets" without uttering a word.

I have learned a very important lesson from my walk with The Last Patrol over these many years. Unless a person is put in harm's way, as all our veterans were and are today; and unless that person lives the life the veteran has to live during his or her time of conflict and after returning home ... that person will NEVER begin to understand how the veteran's life is truly affected.

I wasn't there in Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq - or any war. I will never be able to fully comprehend the price that was paid for my freedom or be able to repay the debt I owe. What I can do is love and support those who have taken my place in Freedom's line by going down War's road for me. I can stand tall when the flag of our country is displayed and show respect for what the stars and stripes represent. I can do my part to make sure that the sacrifices made on this country's behalf are never forgotten.

K9 War Dog Memorial

April 26th, 2013

K9 War Dog Memorial

As the wife of a Vietnam veteran “Dogman” (432nd SPS K9), I have a huge place in my heart for the K9s. Many years back, I met Johnny Mayo (also Vietnam Dog Handler). Johnny has been working diligently the last several years to have a war dog monument built to honor the service of over 40,000 military working dogs.

All of his hard work is now paying off, and the work is in progress. The South Carolina War Dog Monument (SCWDM) will honor the service, sacrifice and loyalty of our nation’s military working dogs serving since World War II to present. The SCWDM will be a world-class memorial placed on the center of the plaza in front of the South Carolina Vietnam Memorial in Columbia’s Veterans Memorial Park.

The project will be built in two phases. Phase I will be a 13-foot wide granite base with larger-than-life bronze statues of dog handler and German Shepherd. Phase 2 will include the three remaining primary dog breeds who served with our troops since World War II (Doberman Pinscher, Labrador Retriever and Belgian Malinois Shepherd).

Right now, my husband and I are at the annual Vietnam And All Veterans Reunion in Melbourne, Florida. It is the largest veterans reunion in the country, and we have attended it for 20 years. Some of you may be familiar with my image called War Dogs Sacrifice (image above). The display in the image was created by Johnny. He started it several years ago with just a few of the plaques and a very simple display. Over the years, it grew to what is shown in my image. I saw the display again today, and it has grown even larger, adding the current information on the new monument.

I would like to do my part to help the War Dog Monument effort. So I told Johnny today that I will contribute all proceeds that I receive on the sales of the image War Dogs Sacrifice from 4/26/13 through 5/5/13 to the project. Here is the link to purchase the image: War Dogs Sacrifice

You can also help with your purchase of the image and by forwarding this information on to others you know who would like to see a monument such as this be built to honor our K9 veterans and working dogs.

If you would like more information on the monument. you can visit the website at: South Carolina War Dog Monument

On behalf of the K9 Corps, I say a big thank you!

Fathers Day Sale

June 13th, 2012

Fathers Day Sale

Father's Day is just around the corner. From now through 6/17/12 at 11:59p.m. (EST) choose ANY image from my portfolio (print, mounted, framed, or greeting card) and receive 15% off! Please note this discount is off my markup price only and not the entire retail amount. Discount will be reflected when you add item to your cart. USE DISCOUNT CODE DTEHEN.

Memorial Day - Limited Time Promotion

May 25th, 2012

Memorial Day - Limited Time Promotion

Memorial Day is just around the corner. We should be celebrating our veterans and troops every day of the year and thanking them for the sacrifices they and their families make on our behalf for the freedoms we enjoy today. In honor of our veterans, I am offering a LIMITED TIME promotion (link below) of a 20x16 stretched canvas wrap. Only 25 are available, and the offer expires on 5/30/12. Scripture John 15:13 is quoted: "Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends." Around the border of the image are listed all of the conflicts and wars our country has been involved in from the American Revolution through our current time. Great gift for honoring our troops. Please feel free to share this link with your friends and family.

Veterans At Vietnam Wall - Limited Time Offer

My First Art Show

March 2nd, 2012

My First Art Show

Well, I stepped out into new territory this week. I entered my first art show - the 6th Annual Celebration of the Arts in Largo, Florida. The show will run from March 2 - 4. I didn't win anything this time, but the experience was wonderful. Met a few of the ladies I know from Fine Art America, and exchanged great information. Up until now, most of what I have done in the photography world has been online. So now I will be venturing out in the world of art shows and competitions. I really appreciate all of you who have supported my work through your comments, votes, encouragement and purchases. If you live in the Pinellas County, Florida, area, you can get more information on this art show at www.largocommunitycenter.com.

New Promotion - Limited Time and Print Offer

August 17th, 2011

New Promotion - Limited Time and Print Offer

As a way to share with you and promote some of my photography and art, periodically I will be running a limited-time offer for a fantastic deal. My first promotion is for my image called Jet At Sunset. It's a great image of a jet with the terminal and front of the aircraft reflecting in the nose cone. Be sure to check out the rest of my portfolio. This special offer is good for the first 10 purchasers. Hurry! Promotion will expire on August 25, 2011 at 5 p.m.



Jet At Sunset - Limited Time Offer