Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund

Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund

Way back on August 8th, about two weeks into the beginning of this blog, I mentioned a few charities that were helping our family with financial assistance.  One of those charities that has been there since the beginning and continues to be there for our family, is the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.   Looking back, I don’t think I really gave them all the kudos I should have, so I wanted to take some time to remedy that situation. 

I remember back in Bethesda, getting visits from the “guys in the red shirts”.   These were the very proud members of the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.  I don’t know if it was the red shirts or the white hair, or both, but they all seemed bigger than life to me.  I remember being so touched by their sincerity and empathy;  they made us feel like everything was going to be ok and they were really going to be there for us—which they have! 

When we were in Palo Alto visiting during the Thanksgiving holiday, we received a visit from “Doc Barker” who is with the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund.  When he was visiting, all those same memories came back from Bethesda….”It’s going to be all right because the Marines are here!”   They have truly been a blessing to Erin and Sam and our whole extended family and I want to thank them from the bottom of my heart for their continued support; both financial and moral.  Please take a few minutes to look over their web site, and if you feel moved, please contribute to this wonderful organization. 

Sam’s medical status:   

Thanksgiving Week (November 19 through 24):  Our family (Erin’s side of the family) spent Wednesday through Friday with Sam and Erin.  On Thanksgiving Day, Sam’s dad, Eric, was also visiting.  We ending up going to Marie Callender’s with my brother and Sister-in-law (and family), and of course Erin.  It was very different as Thanksgiving Days go, but I think we all were just so thankful that Sam is still with us and he is doing so well. 

I’ll have to admit that, over the last few months, I’ve been pretty impatient and have wanted to see Sam progress more quickly.  It usually takes a few days for me to recover from our visits because as you might imagine, I worry so much about Erin and Sam and my heart aches for them after I leave.  But this past visit, and maybe it was because it was Thanksgiving, the Serenity Prayer kept coming into my mind. 

Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

I wanted to pass on to all of you something Sam did when we were visiting on Wednesday that really touched my heart.  It’s been a few weeks since his trach tube was removed, but he still is unable to talk.  At one point during the day, Erin left the room.  Right after Erin left, Sam looked at me and started mouthing some words.  He did this four different times in a row and did manage to vocalize a few grunts.  I have no idea what he was trying to say, but I thought it was so strange that he waited until Erin left the room to try to talk to me.  What was he trying to say?  In my mind and heart, I think he was probably saying to me, “I’m strong and I’m going to make it, don’t worry”.  Or maybe he was saying, “Tell Erin to stop pinching me!”.  Hopefully it was the former.

Yesterday (it’s now Monday Nov 26th) Erin told me Sam seems to be having “flashbacks” (PTSD) from Iraq and maybe the actual IED explosion.   She said at times he really starts to sweat and just looks like he’s under a lot of duress.  Erin came in to his room very early on Sunday morning around 5:30 AM and he was wide awake and not looking very happy.  She asked him if he had a bad dream and he said yes.  She then gave him lots of hugs and massaged him and he eventually fell back asleep.  Erin is going to ask the doctors if there is something they can give Sam that may help his anxiety.

One last note on Erin:  On Saturday, she took her first day off in four months and came up to Sacramento for the day.  As you can imagine, it was pretty hard for her to be gone from Sam all day.  She is so afraid she is going to miss something significant.  But—she did good and may come back up next Saturday to celebrate her birthday (November 29th) with us in Sacramento!

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6 Responses to Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund

  1. Scott Jacobs says:

    Here from Badgers Forward.

    Best wishes, Marine, and to your family as well. You take it easy, but you get better, ya here?

  2. Danalee says:

    Happy Birthday, Erin. Your Dad is so darned proud of you! We choir ladies at Church are amazed at your grace and strength. As we get older, birthday presents seem sort of comical. But in my heart I feel you’ve already received the best, and most priceless, birthday present any woman in love could ask for–to have her man in her life. When we do the “for better or worse” I don’t think we ever contemplate what that “worse” could mean. Sweetie, you’ve been there and back. God bless you on your birthday, and HUGS from the St. Lawrence Choir. We just know that the best is yet to be.

    Danalee

  3. Mornin’ Tony, Hi Sam & Erin…

    Just catching up on Sam, and have to say…”PRAISE GOD”! One day at a time, sweet Jesus!

    And, YES, we are ALL SO thankful for Sam, SO thankful you have him with you & back in your lives!

    You know, God has had mercy on Sam, has smiled down on him & WILL continue to heal his body & soul…for HIS service!

    And, God Bless these Marines who have stood beside you through this all…another example of how many “Legions of Angels” each of our soldiers have, praying for them, helping to meet the needs of them and, their families.

    Erin, folks like these, and the families of our soldiers everywhere & our soldiers themselves…ALL have been the inspiration for my new song,
    “Unsung HEROES Life”… a tribute to the sacrifices we all make, to honor their service/sacrifices…dedicated to Sam & Erin.

    Erin, you are the “HERO” in Sam’s life, don’t forget that! No doubt, you are the reason he progresses…he’s driven to get well, seeing you everyday, feeling your touch, hearing your loving voice…those are the things that will give him the motivation & strength to get well.

    God Bless you!

    And, may this week’s birthday be the most precious one you have in this life!

    I want you to do something for me, for this birthday, I want you to …
    PRAY, DREAM, BELIEVE & “Make A Wish”!

    Listen to heart, in song, “Make A Wish” … under “Free Downloads”… http://www.MakeAWishSong.com, read the lyrics below and,
    share them with Sam, too.

    Just know that in my heart, that’s my prayer for you, & Sam, too.

    Thinking, Praying, Dreaming, Believing … for you ALL,
    Love, Susan

    Remember to … Pray, Believe, Dream … then,

    ” Make A Wish ”

    I wished … upon a star
    I wished … with ALL … my heart.
    I could see … your face,
    I asked … to take … your place.

    I prayed … on bended knees
    I cried … Lord … PLEASE
    Take away … the pain
    Give it all … to me.

    So, Dream …”Make a Wish”
    I Believe … you HAVE been blessed
    Miracles … still exist … look at you.

    Now, Dream …’til dreams come true
    Make … Believe … everything you do
    Don’t forget … a miracle … waits for you!

    When … you Dream …”Make a Wish”
    And, Believe … you WILL … be blessed
    Miracles … still exist,
    So, “Make a Wish!”

    And, Pray … with ALL … your heart
    Wish … on every star
    Believe …’til dreams come true
    And, Know … I pray for you.

    So, Dream …”Make a Wish”
    I Believe … you HAVE been blessed
    Miracles … still exist … look at you !

    And, Dream …’til dreams come true
    Make … Believe … everything you do
    Don’t forget … a Miracle … waits for you!

    When … you Dream …”Make a Wish”
    I Believe … you WILL … be blessed
    Don’t forget … a Miracle
    Waits … for… YOU!

    So, Dream … ’til dreams … come true!
    Believe … everything you do
    Miracles … still exist
    So, ” Make a Wish ! ”

    Don’t forget … a Miracle
    Waits … for … YOU !

    So … ” Make A Wish ! ”

    http://www.MakeAWishSong.com

    (ALL Downloads Free under … “Free Downloads” section on homepage)

    (Copyright Nov.21, 2005)
    Susan D. Wiseman – “The Tribute Lady”
    http://www.TheTributeLady.com

    “Christ-Centered Pieces” – Given Gifts
    P.O. Box 1591
    Fayetteville, Ga. 30214-1591

  4. Thank you Doc Barker for your visit on Thanksgiving and for the work you do with the Marine Semper Fi Fund. I’d also like to thank all the marines and their wives who volunteer for this outstanding organization.

    When I went to see my therapist today, he asked me what the most memorable part of this past weekend was. I told him that it was the time we spent together as a family (my sister and her family too) after dinner in Sam’s room. We were all connected after breaking bread with one another, and we brought that spirit back to Sam and embraced him on that day of thanksgiving. It is a day I will never forget.

  5. We all need to be reminded that the Spirit of God is praying for Sam; sounds strange, but I believe that Jesus is praying for us all the time. Please study this verse; it helps us to know more and more just how much God really loves us.

    Ro 8:26
    Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

  6. K. Boldt says:

    My husband & I just came across this website about Sam’s injuries & recovery. He and his family will now be in our prayers. Matt Zindars was my brother’s brother-in-law. I was not aware of Sam’s injuries from that attack. Please be assured that our family has the utmost respect and gratitude for the sacrifices made by Matt, Sam, and all of our American troops. The same goes to their families at home. We are instilling that pride into our 2 young daughters. I have been honored to donate to various veteran charities, but was not aware of the Injured Marine Semper Fi Fund. Tomorrow I will be making a donation on behalf of Sam & Matt. Please take care and may God continue to support Sam’s recovery, his family, the doctors & nurses that care for him – and may God Bless the Marines Matt & Sam had to leave behind.

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