You find yourselves in the unfamiliar position of having to quietly sit talking among yourselves while waiting on Lethal who is rarely if ever late for the issue’s presentation. Even Diaman and Ginny seem to know nothing regarding the cause of the delay when queried.
This has given you time to note the many extra unfilled seats in areas of the room, patron’s and general seating. The staff and CyberLethals have been polite but insistent that the first two seats in every row remain empty in accord with their instructions from Lethal.
Suddenly the sounds of a band striking up a march enters the conference room, both from the hall and from the speakers about the room as the screens become live showing a long shot of the empty hallway leading to the conference room. Now in addition to the band you hear an upwell of voices, male and female united as one calling out loud and proud in a cadence:
The Warrior Song
As the cadence starts you see an honor guard followed by flags begin to appear from a side hall 3 flags flank each side to the Stars & Stripes, one each for the 5 Branches of the armed services and the black and white flag honoring our POW/MIAs. Directly behind them leading a host of Veterans 4 abreast each proudly marching to the best of is ability and/or disability are two grizzled but somehow vaguely familiar figures, one a Marine Officer, one an Air Force NCO.
As the color guard enters the room the Air Force NCO barks out the order, “Color Guard! Wheel Right…WHEEL!” The right side man marks time in place turning slight with each step and the left side man slowly begin a swing to the right. Once they are in prefect line abreast again they flawlessly still in synchronized step once again begin moving forward. This repeats with precision as each set of flags enters the room followed by the the Officer and NCO who after making his turn calls out again in a loud voice “COLUMN! Right Wheel Turn… WHEEL!” The same flawless execution is performed by the Veteran’s whom you see are dressed in all manner of garb.
Some wear khakis, white shirts and ties appropriate to their branch of service along with blue blazers and overseas caps denoting them as members of a specific post of the VFW. Others wear their dress uniforms to various degrees, some are simply in slacks and sport coats whose lapels bear American Flags and the Insignia of their Service Branch. Other wear the BDU of activity duty service men and women. There are more than a smattering of medals worn on uniforms, ribbons about necks or small depictions pinned to lapels on these people.
Finally there are those veterans of a different breed. These are dressed in denim, heavy boots, T-shirts of various Patriotic messages or in support/reminding us of our POW and MIAs over which vests are worn. Many of these grizzled vets sport long hair and/or beards, Tattoos with the names of unpronounceable locations and dates from the 60s & 70s many of their vest announce their affiliation with motorcycle groups, some even the Patriot Guard. Most of these men have one thing in common, a haunted look in their eyes speaking to some unknown horror they have witnessed and will never stop seeing in their minds, the look their brothers call ‘the thousand yard stare.’
As you have been taking all this in the Color Guard has marched to its position in front of the stage now flanked to either side by the Honor Guard, As the first of the Column of Veterans arrive at the head of the seating area the Air Force NCO (whom you begin to suspect of having eyes in the back of his head) again bellows out a rapid fire set of orders which are instantly obeyed: “DETAIL! HALT!…Detail- ATTEN-SION! REN-DER HON-ORS!” Crisp salutes are snapped and held while tears mist in some of the Vets eyes and a few throats are cleared as all the service flags and the POW/MIA flag dip in honor of the American flag before the NCO again speaks “Two! DETAIL! PUH-RAID REST!” Moving as one and sound as one giant boot. the vets assume a more relaxed posture, feet shoulder with apart, hands crossed at the small of their back.
The Officer and NCO now salute each other then split heading for the stairs at each end of the stage and momentarily disappear behind the curtains at either side of the stage. However instead of reappearing at the podium it is the familiar figures of Lethal Leprechaun and Impish Dragon who emerge seconds later from behind the curtains to stand at the podium. They both gaze proudly our from the stage misty eyed each issuing nods of recognition to certain individuals as eyes meet before Impish calls out “AT EASE! Be seated”
Lethal steps to the podium and begins:
Ladies & Gentleman of the readership, my brothers and sisters in arms,
The term ‘Ex-soldier’ is a gross misnomer we have been led to buy into by our Government and especially the liberals who would have us all caged behind a sign reading “Break Glass Only in Case of War. Well I stand here to tell you that:
There is no such thing as an ‘Ex-soldier’.
That title and our ranks are EARNED by us, never just given to us and what you earn is yours FOREVER. Our government knows this but prefers we didn’t or at least didn’t believe in it and the oath we took for it so deeply. THAT is why they fear us, want us disarmed using any feint that can come up with, and why under the ‘Napolitano Doctrine of Homeland Security’ they label us ‘Potential Homegrown Domestic Terrorists.
However we soldiers took a sacred oath. We swore to protect and defend the United States of America against ALL enemies, foreign AND DOMESTIC. While today is about honoring and supporting those who served and those who presently serve, it is also a chance for Veterans to come together to remind our Government that they only Govern us at the sufferance of WE THE PEOPLE, that their might is in actual fact OUR might. That our Founding Fathers INTENDED that the Government fear us, to prevent the sort of Big Brother Tyranny we slide presently closer to with each day.
It is about sending them the message that we answered a call to arms once and we can again if they make it necessary for us to do so to keep our sacred oaths.
Ladies and gentleman of the readership, I ask you to stand and join with me in applauding these Veterans and thanking them for their Sacrifice and Service. God Bless them and keep them safe from harm and God Bless the United States so that they may never have the cause to keep their oaths domestically.
Ladies and Gentleman- Please put down your mugs and stand for our National Anthem, that for which our Veterans have stood for, stood by and stand for, sung by a Veteran.
National Anthem, Full Version! Four Verses, Lewis Shaeffer
This is one of the very few times a year that you will see anything in one of my issues come before coffee. That alone should demonstrate the level of reverence for and depth of love I hold for our country.
Yesterday marked the 240th Birthday of the United State Marine Corps
smile.amazon.com – Wounded warrior support
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How do I shop at AmazonSmile?
To shop at AmazonSmile simply go to smile.amazon.com from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to smile.amazon.com to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile.
Which products on AmazonSmile are eligible for charitable donations?
Tens of millions of products on AmazonSmile are eligible for donations. You will see eligible products marked “Eligible for AmazonSmile donation” on their product detail pages. Recurring Subscribe-and-Save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible.
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Get it straight: The difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day
(CNN)We are here to make sure you don’t embarrass yourself.
Inevitably, someone says something demonstrating confusion over the difference between Memorial Day and Veterans Day. Allow us to explain it to you.
Memorial Day: Celebrated the last Monday in May, Memorial Day is the holiday set aside to pay tribute to those who died serving in the military.
The website for the United States Department of Veterans Affairs recounts the start of Memorial Day this way:
“Three years after the Civil War ended, on May 5, 1868, the head of an organization of Union veterans — the Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) — established Decoration Day as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the war dead with flowers. Maj. Gen. John A. Logan declared that Decoration Day should be observed on May 30. It is believed that date was chosen because flowers would be in bloom all over the country.”
The passage of the National Holiday Act of 1971 by Congress made it an official holiday.
Veterans Day: This federal holiday falls on November 11 and is designated as a day to honor all who have served in the military. According to Military.com, Veterans Day began as Armistice Day to honor the end of World War I, which officially took place on November 11, 1918.
“In 1954, after having been through both World War II and the Korean War, the 83rd U.S. Congress — at the urging of the veterans service organizations — amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting the word “Veterans,” the site says. “With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, November 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.”
A joint service color guard sets the POW/MIA table during Eglin’s POW/MIA remembrance ceremony
For those who cannot read the print on the graphic:
This table is our way of symbolizing that members of our profession of arms are missing
from our midst. They are commonly call POW’s or MIA’s We call them brothers.
They are unable to be with us and so we remember them.
call to arms.
in arms who keep faith awaiting their return.
vase is reminiscent of the red ribbon worn on the lapel and breasts of
thousands who bear witness to their unyielding determination to demand
a proper accounting for our missing.
for surely… they have not forsaken you.
240 years of Army uniforms in 2 minutes
Military Scholarships for Spouses and Children | Folds of Honor
The iconic 93-foot-high (28 m) lighthouse-like Massachusetts Veterans War Memorial Tower.
The Veterans War Memorial Tower was approved by the state legislature in October 1930, supported by Senator Theodore Plunkett of Adams and Governor Frank G. Allen. A war memorial had been proposed as early as 1918 for Boston’s Charles River Basin; other proposed locations included Beacon Hill and Copley Square. After more than a decade of debate, Mount Greylock was selected as the site for the monument. It was designed by Boston-based architects Maginnis & Walsh, and built by contractors J.G. Roy & Son of Springfield in 1931-32 at a cost of $200,000. It takes the form of a perpetually lighted beacon to honor the state’s dead from World War I (and subsequent conflicts). The light was at the time the strongest beacon in Massachusetts, with a nighttime visible range of up to 70 miles.
The architectural design of the tower, a 93-foot (28 m) tall shaft with eight frieze-framed observation openings, was intended to have no suggestion of Utilitarianism but instead to display classic austerity. It includes some minor Art Deco details such as the decorative eagle on the base which were designed in part by John Bizzozero of Quincy, Massachusetts [Bizzozero also designed details on the Vermont Capitol building]. Inside it is a domed chamber for a reverential shine that was intended to store tablets and war relicts from wartime units in the state’s history.
Although local legislators and residents advocated for local stone to be used, it was ultimately quarried from Quincy Granite. In part, it bears the inscription “they were faithful even unto death.” One of the inscriptions inside the monument is, “Of those immortal dead who live again in the minds made better by their presence”, which is a line from a poem by George Eliot. The translucent globe of light on top, originally illuminated by twelve 1,500 watt lights (now six), is said to be visible at night for 70 mi (110 km). The formal dedication ceremony on June 30, 1933 by Governor Joseph B. Ely was attended by about 1,500 and broadcast nationally over NBC radio.
‘Til the Last Shot’s Fired – Trace Adkins
New law ensures no Military working dog will be left behind. Ever
More than 2,000 dogs currently serve in the U.S. Military. Each military dog saves the lives of countless servicemen and women while overseas. In the not too distant past, military working dogs were left on foreign soil, never to be reunited with their human partners or home itself. As a result, many still believe that such practices are common, though that’s not the case.
Technically speaking, if dogs are retired overseas, they become civilians and are no longer qualified to travel home on military vehicles. Fortunately, it’s not common practice to retire dogs overseas.
To prevent such unreformed policy from ever presenting such problems to military pups, Congress drafted some new legislation. On Oct. 7, the National Defense Authorization Act passed the House and Senate. This bill includes language supported by the American Humane Association mandating military working dogs be returned to U.S. soil upon retirement. Even further, the dogs’ handlers and families will have the first right of adoption.
Thousands of veterans suffer from post-traumatic stress when coming home from war, and the dogs aren’t excluded from this.
Keeping military dogs with their handlers allows them to help each other heal.
The bill now awaits the president’s signature and we are certain this bill will become law, because we all want every single one of our veterans, including the furry kind, to be brought home to love, respect and admiration.
Greenlight A Vet
Green is the color of hope, renewal and well-being. “Greenlight” is also a term commonly used to activate forward movement. The simple action of changing one light to green is intended to spark a national conversation regarding the recognition of veterans, and “greenlight” them forward as valued members of our communities.
Honoring and Understanding Our Veterans
In the aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, more than 2.5 million U.S. men and women have been deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq. Over 7,000 have lost their lives. Those who have returned pay other costs. They struggle to process their wartime experience, recover from profound losses, and reintegrate into civilian life.
War Ink emerged out of a need to recognize veterans’ service and sacrifices and to bridge the divide between the veterans and civilian communities. This is both exhibit and forum, using tattoos as a springboard for California veterans to share their stories. Stark, beautiful, disturbing, and often darkly humorous, these tattoos are visual expression of memories and emotions that can be difficult to discuss openly.
Ronald Reagan A Soldiers Pledge – Listen Learn Remember
The only problem I have with this is that its not just limited to the Vietnam. It’s true of every war we’ve fought from at least the First World War on if not before.
Sgt. Glenn Fleming, USAF (Ret.)
Frank Cento’s third documentary for the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes centers around Sgt. Glenn Fleming. After reaching his lifelong goal of being a helicopter gunner in the Air Force, he proceeded to fly over 120 successful missions for the global war on terrorism without injury. He also married Jamie and the future looked bright. Then life took a drastic turn when he was diagnosed with PTSD and had to stop flying and leave the military. Both were jobless and close to bankruptcy when the recession hit. A friend told them about the Coalition and they reached out for a helping hand .
Some of you might recognize Sgt. Glenn Fleming from his stint on the reality TV show Sons of a Gun about Red Jacket Firearms where he was employed as a Gunsmith and Welder.
We sing songs about our freedom
We always keep them in our prayers
We wave our flags and bow our heads
Support our Soldiers over there
But all across this nation
Probably right in your home town
There’s a group of weary Soldiers
With their world turned upside down
We asked them for their lives and they agreed
Now their asking for the benefits
That they thought were guaranteed
We sent them off to fight on foreign shores
But now they’re casualties of a bureaucratic war
With every flag draped procession
With every tear and every prayer
We remember those who gave their lives
For every battle we declare
But all across our nation
Probably right in your hometown
There’s a group of broken Heroes
Because their country let them down
We asked them for their lives and they agreed
Now their asking for the benefits
That they thought were guaranteed
We sent them off to fight on foreign shores
But now they’re casualties of a bureaucratic war
We sent them off to fight on foreign shores
Let’s give our Veterans something more.
Well OK- sometimes we wear ponchos and those are a little like capes
We honor those people that serve and protect our country, and we know that without the men and women who watch out for us, we would not have any of the luxuries we do. We are the land of the free because of the brave and we salute you!
First click on a state. When it opens, scroll down to the city and the names will appear. Then click on their names. It should show you a picture of the person, or at least their bio and medals.
This really is an amazing web site. Someone spent a lot of time and effort to create it.
I hope that everyone who receives this appreciates what those who served in Vietnam sacrificed for our country.
The link below is a virtual wall of all those lost during the Vietnam war with the names, bio’s and other information on our lost heroes. Those who remember that time frame, or perhaps lost friends or family can look them up on this site. Pass the link on to others, as many knew wonderful people whose names are listed.
This was sent to me last week and given the timing I couldn’t help including it here.
While “Cleaning of the Stones” at the National Cemetery in Holly. I noticed a quarter placed on one of the stones. Later I also noticed a nickel placed on another,stone, I was so touched with this that I took pictures. (sorry the nickel did not turn out) I Goggled about the coins, and found this out. I am very proud to share this.
A coin left on a headstone lets the deceased soldiers family know that somebody stopped by to pay their respect. Leaving a penny means you visited.
A nickel means that you and the deceased soldier trained at boot camp together. If you served with the soldier, you leave a dime. A quarter is very significant because it means that you were there when that soldier died.
I AM VERY PROUD TO SHARE THIS.
I’m sorry whom ever originally wrote this bit of fiction was proud to share it because frankly he’s proud of his lie.
From Snopes [ http://www.snopes.com/military/coins.asp ]:
Regarding the ‘tradition’ of soldiers leaving on the headstones of fallen comrades varying denominations of coins to denote their relationship with the deceased, the earliest reference to this practice we’ve found so far dates only to June 2009, when it appeared as a web site post. The version now commonly circulated in e-mail appears to have been drawn from it, albeit some changes have slipped in, such as “A buddy who served in the same outfit, or was with the deceased when he died, might leave a quarter” becoming “By leaving a quarter at the grave, you are telling the family that you were with the soldier when he was killed.”
Despite the claim of this tradition’s dating back to the days of the Roman Empire, there’s no reason to suppose that it does. A coin might be placed in the mouth of a fallen Roman soldier (to get him across the River Styx), but his comrades wouldn’t be leaving their money on his grave, but rather expending it on a funeral banquet in his honor.
Given the lack of evidence that anyone anywhere is following this ‘tradition,’ it is perhaps best regarded not as an actual practice, but instead as someone’s idea of what should be.
Yet military folk do sometimes leave very special remembrances at the graves of deceased servicemen: challenge coins. These tokens identify their bearers as members of particular units and are prized and cherished by those to whom they have been given; thus any challenge coins found at gravesites were almost certainly left there by comrades-in-arms of the deceased.
Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue – Toby Keith
Ode of Remembrance
The “Ode of Remembrance” is an ode taken from Laurence Binyon’s poem, “For the Fallen“, which was first published in The Times in September 1914.
For the Fallen was specifically composed in honor of the casualties of the British Expeditionary Force, which by then already suffered severely at the Battle of Mons and the Battle of the Marne in the opening phase of the war on the Western Front. Over time, the third and fourth stanzas of the poem (usually nowadays just the fourth) have been claimed as a tribute to all casualties of war, regardless of state, and it is this selection of For the Fallen to which the term “Ode of Remembrance” usually refers.
The “Ode of Remembrance” is regularly recited at memorial services held on days commemorating World War I, such as ANZAC Day, Remembrance Day, and Remembrance Sunday. In Australia’s Returned and Services Leagues, and in New Zealand’s numerous RSAs, it is read out nightly at 7 p.m., followed by a minute’s silence. In Australia and New Zealand it is also part of the Dawn service at 4.28 a.m. Recitations of the “Ode of Remembrance” are often followed by a playing of the “Last Post”. In Canadian remembrance services, a French translation is often used along with or instead of the English ode.
The line Lest we forget, taken from Kipling’s poem “Recessional” (which incidentally has nothing to do with remembering the fallen in war), is often added as if were part of the ode and repeated in response by those listening, especially in Australia. In the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, the final line of the ode, “We will remember them”, is repeated in response. In Canada, the second stanza of the above extract has become known as the Act of Remembrance, and the final line is also repeated
The ode is also read at the Menin Gate, every evening at 8 p.m., after the first part of the “Last Post”. It is mostly read by a British serviceman. The recital is followed by a minute of silence
Ronald Reagan A Soldiers Pledge Listen Learn Remember
A very inspirational speech by Ronald Reagan. This is what a President is supposed to sound like. Listen, learn and remember who we are!
The Eerie Forest of Lost Soldiers
In the forests surrounding the Neva Bridgehead area in Russia the trees carry a deep scar of history. All through the forests are the remnants of war.
Quite literally, the trees in this forest grew around in the war. From 1941 to 1944 the nearby city of Leningrad was under siege and the Neva Bridgehead was the staging ground for many of the assaults on the city. leaving behind weapons, bombs, and equipment from both sides.
The saplings on the ground grew up and found there way up, around, and through the things that were left behind.
You’ll Feel Proud to Be an American After You Listen to This Soldier Choir
Homeless Veterans: Stand Down
Some veterans returning from Iraq or Afghanistan are finding themselves homeless. Scott Pelley reports on an annual encampment in San Diego where veterans can find hope, help and services.
It might be a long watch but its probably the most important thing in this entire issue. Remember these are all 2010 figures. PLEASE watch listen, think and help.
We are here today honoring in part those who fought and are fighting to prevent this from happening by terrorism and external threats. Don’t let our government and those who demand we follow their laws in our land make it happen from the inside.
We used to ‘Kill A Commie For Mommy,’ now we should ‘Feed An Islami Some Hammy For Uncle Sammy’!
I thank you Lethal for this most moving Veteran’s Day issue. I thank you and Impish for your service and I’m proud and happy to call you my friends. Your issue had so many interesting
sites to visit along with videos. I didn’t want to do it all in a day….I will savor this issue for days.
Thank you from my heart!
Moderation in anything is never a bad thing Ginny. Glad you enjoyed it and Thank You for your support of our troops.
Maybe one day we’ll have a Holiday where nobody has to hang a ribbon on their door in honor of a family member who is deployed.
Wouldn’t that be great?
That would be WONDERFUL! It isn’t just the person being deployed…..it’s their spouse, children, mother, father, sister and brother.
Ginny, you are so right. I see it every day. Almost every day of every year we have someone deployed somewhere and we try our very best to keep in touch with the families left behind. We often forget, since we only really see the military member at work every day, that there is people they care about left behind. And those people are not nearly as aware of the base and its responsibilities, capabilities and support. It is up to US, to reach out and give them the support they need.
Thank you for bringing this portion of the whole experience to light.
Too true Ginny and I think the theme of the Veterans Day 2016 issue might have just been found!
The Forest of Lost Soldiers made a great impact on me.
It says “life goes on, while the mark made by our soldiers, forever remains.”
Wars may come and go but our soldier remain eternal…as apparently do the marks of their passing though an area.
I found it a pretty good visual explaination of the therm ‘war torn area’
I wish we could get the movers and shakers of all the worlds governments to spent time in forrests such as that one
so that they might learn that not all the scars obtained in war heal quickly or easily. Some change us, change what we are perminantly.
Thank you for another excellent issue for Veterans Day. As always I was moved, often to tears, by this issue.
Thank you for your service!
Howard “SbrBiker” Zang
1976 – 1983
Semper Fi Sgt Zang!
Thank you for your service, support and readership.
Glad to know I’m not the only Marine that this subject moves to the point of tears.
Thanks for having the courage to say so, this is probalby one of the two most difficult issues of the year for me to put out.
Lethal, my brother, that was the best memorial you have done, yet! Excellent job, my friend. Truly praiseworthy.
I’m sitting here, safe and warm in my own home, my eyes still shiny with tears and I can’t help but think of the thousands of our brothers and sisters who aren’t safe and warm in their own homes. ‘Tis truly and surely a sin, most unforgivable, over what we (our country) put our veterans through.
Thank you for your efforts, You are deeply appreciated.
It is truly sad and (in my mind) practically criminal that our government is will to do more for those who disregard our laws &
enter the country illegally then for those who have supported it in time of conflict. Welfare is a charity, not an entitlement
and charity should begin at home with our citizens and with our soldiers.
I’d like to take this oportunity to thank someone who gets over looked in all this. You. You served in the Air Force but returned as a civilian to serve again in a different capacity. It is impissible to know how many of your deploying soldiers your instruction has saved or might save. I know you continue to make sacrifices in your life to do what you do and that you could just as easily walk away tomorrow and make far more for lees work than you do now. We both know why you don’t.
Dedication to and belief in our county and our fighting men and women. That should not pass unnoticed, unremarked upon or unthanked.
THANK YOU, Bob, for your service as one of our troops then and for your CONTINUED service in support of our troops now.
I’m truly touched. I would expect no less from you, my brother, to understand exactly why I do what I do. Thank you for your wonderfully kind words. You’ve brought a tear to my eye, truly you have.
And you, my brother in arms, my brother in fun, and my brother in imagination, have given more than most. Your own sacrifices have gone mostly unnoticed, and unappreciated, but you know that I know and you know that when we finally leave this world, that we will both be part of God’s Honor Guard and will continue on to fight the good fight.
I know it sounds corny, but …
I love ya man!
Back at you my Brother from a completely different gene pool, (Polish vs Irish) and my sincere sympathies
that you weren’t ‘lucky enough’ when you were born. IMHO you’d have made a grand Irishman, even if a bit o’ a light weight in the Pub.
God Bless all Soldiers past and present. Thank you for your service and willingness to fight and protect us here at home. My Dad, fought in WW2, I didn’t get to know him but I am still very proud of him.
As well you should be Maggie. As we all should be of our Greatest Generation.
Though lets not forget we had some pretty spectacular women here at home backstoiping those men and seeing they had what it took to fight that war.
We just returned from Honolulu, while there we visited Pearl Harbor and the Punch Bowl memorials. .The Punch Bowl Memorial. .was so impressive and such a wonderful tribute to those who served as well as s to the MIA’s.
There was a time early on in my career when I had to put time in an ‘administrative slot’ before I could or would be promoted.
I hated those postings for the most part. This one while not terribly demanding, was at it best extremely tedious and boring with little chance for excitement.
It’s only saving graces were I liked the foreign location quite abit and I was in Pearl for 24 hours once every 4 days, usually having 12 to 16 ours of that time free to myself.
I was thinking of resigning my commission and returning to civilan life at one point during this (what seemed like eternal) posting and had mamanged to get 72 hrs liberty in Honolulu. The second day I went on one of the WWII tours which included going out to the Arizona Memorial and to the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific. They made such an impression on me that I never thought about retiring because I hated my posting every again. In fact after I was wounded and the subject was raised I thought about it for about 30 seconds and those places sprung to mind and I refused to volentarily retire.