Staff SGT Donald Wayne West, Jr., enlisted in the United States Army National Guard on September 11, 2001. As part of Operation Iraqi Freedom, Company A of the 150th Combat Engineers served active duty Aug 29, 2004, until Dec 30, 2005. SSGT West returned to college in January, 2006. He married Lauren Ritchie June 9, 2006, at Seaside, Fla., and they have three children. SSGT West completed military service at Camp Minden, LA on Aug 23, 2009.

Friday, February 25, 2005

Day 44 - Up in Arms

SFC Smith and SSg Riley, standing in front of Black Watch Battle Group shield, "Nemo me impune lacessit."

Literally translated, "No one provokes me with impunity," the phrase is the Latin motto of the Order of the Thistle, the Scottish chivalrous order. It also appears on the Scottish royal arms, and is the motto of the Royal Scots and Black Watch regiments of the British Army.

Edgar Allan Poe references the motto in his classic story, "The Cask of Amontillado".

According to legend, the "guardian thistle" has played its part in the defense of the ancient realm of Scotland against a night attack by the Danes, one of whom let out a yell of pain when he stepped on a prickly thistle, thus alerting the Scottish defenders.

In the original motto, "me" was therefore originally the thistle itself, but by extension now refers to the Scottish crown and the Scottish regiments which have adopted it. Posted by Hello