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.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Day 162 - America Supports You

Last night, when President Bush addressed troops at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, he suggested ways we can show support for our soldiers during Fourth of July celebrations:

“In this time of testing, our troops can know: The American people are behind you. Next week, our nation has an opportunity to make sure that support is felt by every soldier, sailor, airman, Coast Guardsman, and Marine at every outpost across the world. This Fourth of July, I ask you to find a way to thank the men and women defending our freedom -- by flying the flag, sending a letter to our troops in the field, or helping the military family down the street. The Department of Defense has set up a website --America Supports You. You can go there to learn about private efforts in your own community. At this time when we celebrate our freedom, let us stand with the men and women who defend us all.”

Messages like this one from Ronnie Patterson (SFC USA Ret), Hot Springs, AR, can be posted as a comment on this blog and also on the America Supports You web site:

After having served my nation, as you have and will continue to do, for my 21 years of service, I came away with a real sense of pride in the military forces of this nation and of the power of the people we all help to protect and whose freedom we provide. My hat is off to you guys and gals over there in Iraq and Afghanistan. You've got a really tough job to do, and you are doing it with the professionalism and expertise that are the hallmark of the US Military. You are all heroes to us here in the States. Without your dedication and devotion to duty and this nation we (as a nation) could not survive. The community of Hot Springs, AR is a strong supporter of what you folks are doing. The prayers of every church in town (about 100 of them) are with you day and night. God speed to you and may you all return home safely. God Bless you all, and God "has" blessed America with people like you.