Sunday, 14 April 2024

Wounded warrior welcomed home; Marine Corps birthday celebrated

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Community members line the way home taken by Private Ricky Abraham on Saturday, November 7, 2009. Photo by Ginny Craven.


 

 

 

 

 

 


 


LAKE COUNTY – It was a very busy weekend for veterans, troops and patriots in Lake County.


On Saturday, Nov. 7, with only a few hours notice, information came through that a wounded soldier would be arriving home to recuperate.


Telephone calls and e-mail messages were quickly completed in an attempt to assemble a welcoming party for the wounded warrior.


Even with the short window of opportunity, Operation Tango Mike supporters, veterans and Patriot Guard Riders from Lake County gathered to form a flag line and properly welcome the young man.


Private Ricky Abraham was greeted by Patriot Guard Riders from the Bay Area at the Oakland Airport. Upon his arrival, he was welcomed by smiles, salutes and waving flags.


The young soldier was surprised and thought that was the welcome home he would receive. He joined his friends and family and began the trip to Lake County.


At approximately 4:15 p.m., PV2 Ricky Abraham arrived on Scotts Valley Road in Lakeport. He sat in the passenger seat of a vehicle driven by his mother-in-law Heidi Haskett. He was en route to the home where his wife Courtney anxiously awaited his arrival.

 

 

 

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Military parents Victor and Beck Rogers waiting to honor Private Ricky Abraham on Saturday, November 7, 2009. Photo by Ginny Craven.
 

 

 


Much to Private Abraham’s amazement, he could see American flags waving in the wind in the distance along the roadway. As the vehicle drew nearer the crowd he realized it was his welcome home in Lake County. As the car slowly moved through the flag line, Abraham was greeted by cheers, salutes and waves from his supporters.


The soldier was visibly moved by the support and snapped a salute as he passed by. At the end of the flag line, a group of local Patriot Guard Riders took the lead and provided an escort to the final destination. There, Ricky Abraham shared his deep appreciation, shaking hands and hugging his supporters.


The truth is that everyone that was present shared in their gratitude for the soldier’s service and sacrifice. There was no need for him to thank anyone.


On Sunday morning, diners enjoyed a scrumptious pancake breakfast prepared by the chefs of the Kelseyville Lions Club. They were also treated to table service from the Military Funeral Honors Team of Lake County. The Lions Club sponsored the breakfast as a fundraising event for the team.


The bright crisp morning brought out a great number of folks. The event was a roaring success and will benefit the all-volunteer team that has now rendered honors at 614 veteran funerals in Lake County.


Sunday afternoon brought yet another special event as dozens of people assembled at the American Legion post in Kelseyville to celebrate the 234th Birthday of the United States Marine Corps.


Marines of all ages gathered to remember and celebrate. Their families, other veterans and civilians joined the party. Everyone joined in for a rousing rendition of the Marine Corps Hymn and every Marine present introduced himself and recounted his service to our country.

 

 

 

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Attendees at the Marine Corps birthday celebration on Sunday, November 8, 2009, sing the Marine Corps Hymn. Photo by Ginny Craven.
 

 


The eldest Marine in attendance was Bill Sperling, a World War II veteran, and the youngest was Pat Mick, a Gulf War veteran. However, 9-year-old Patrick Mick would quickly tell you that he is the youngest future Marine at the party. That may very well be true as his father Pat and Grandfather Larry (Vietnam veteran) both honorably served as United States Marines.


The official 2009 birthday message from the Marine Corps is, “To all those who have gone before, to those who wear the uniform today, and to the families that give us the strength to forge ahead – I wish you a heartfelt 234th birthday! Semper Fidelis! James T. Conway, General, U.S. Marine Corps, Commandant of the Marine Corps.”


Follow Lake County News on Twitter at http://twitter.com/LakeCoNews and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Lake-County-News/143156775604?ref=mf .

 

 

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From left, World War II veteran Bill Sperling, Gulf War veteran Pat Mick and 9-year-old Patrick Mick at the Marine Corps birthday celebration on Sunday, November 8, 2009. Photo by Ginny Craven.
 

 

 

 

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Navy veterans Ron Quick (left) and Don Farris, who also is a member of the United Veterans Council Military Funeral Honors Team, talk at the Marine Corps birthday celebration on Sunday, November 8, 2009. Photo by Ginny Craven.
 

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