Thursday, November 11, 2010
My Marine on Veteran's Day
I'd like to introduce you to one of my Veteran's. His name is Aaron James Day, my late husband. He was born an only child to Mr. and Mrs. James Day, November 23, 1956. He was the apple of his mom's eye, after being told she would never conceive.
He attended Ottawa University, in Ottawa, KS on a basketball scholarship. being the sportsman that he was, he also played football where upon during a game his right knee was taken out and hence lost his scholarship.
Upon leaving school he joined the Marines, fours year service 1977 - 1981, during a time of peace and I know to some that doesn't mean much, but he served,just the same. Trained marksman.
After he was discharged he married his first wife and fathered three children, two boys and one girl. Now here's the clincher, we had two girls and two boys, our boys were twins, one was still-born. Yes, this only child had a house full of kids that he loved dearly. We had a running joke, the take on an old movie, ' Yours, Mine and Ours'. You see I had four of my own when we met. We also harped on the other movie, 'Cheaper By The Dozen'.
He was a good father and loved kids. He was a big kid himself. He willingly changed diapers, walked the floors at night when they wouldn't or couldn't sleep. He took care of them when they sick, made doctor appointments and spent his spare time at school. On the first day of school, he would take them all to school, meet the teachers and offer his services. Aaron, would find time during every month to have a day where he would do things with the girl's and a day for the boys, I was never invited, I was told to do my thing. He celebrated every birthday, including mine and our anniversary. He never forgot. He would sing to children and coo to them. My girlfriend use to call him the 'Baby Whisperer'. To me, he was Mr. Mom. He could magically calm any child, not just his own.
We would stay up for hours after the kids were asleep playing card games, Nintendo, Sega or what have you. We always had some competition going on between he and I and even the kids. I still have the notebook that we used to keep score from our card games and games like Homerun Derby, Tennis, Hockey and Dr. Mario, just to name a few.
I use to be an avid seamstress, he loved to sit and watch me work, he marveled at each completed outfit. When the schools instituted uniforms, I made them for all three kids that were in school at the time. He couldn't' believe what I did with ten yards of blue and ten yards of white, they were suited for the year. Our youngest son the twin was premature by two months, and I made his clothes using Cabbage Patch Doll patterns, a tiny little thing 3 1/2 lbs, that now stands 6'1/2" at 16.
One day mid-October, the 11Th of 2000, to be exact, he failed to come home or call after work, he always called me at lunch or sometimes on break. The 12Th no call before I went to work, later that afternoon, my father-in-law and wife showed up at my job to inform me that he was in the hospital, my worse nightmare had come true.
Yes, nightmare, you see I had seen this in my dream about six months earlier and again a month before it happened. I shared the second dream with him and asked him to be careful. He was a brave man, he was my strength and use to tell me that if anything happened remember he was going to Jefferson Barracks for burial. He was in a coma, found not far from work, beaten and unconscious. The area in which he worked was not far from a housing projects with a high crime rate. He vegetated for seven months before he died, severe brain damage.
This Veteran's Day, his birthday, that sometimes fall on Thanksgiving, Memorial Day and everyday we miss him. He was the love of my life. He taught me a lot about love, life and survival. He taught me 'No' was not acceptable, he made me a Marine. Without him I would not have been able to bury my mother seven months before he passed. My father passed eleven months later and I was left to raise five young children alone. I want to say 'Thanks, for being a part of my life and leaving me your strength'.