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.

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Day 211 - Western Influence

I’m probably one of the few people in the universe who has waited until the second half-century of life to visit Dallas. WHOA!
Late last night, we pulled in to the Adolphus Hotel.
A baroque masterpiece infused with classic European charm, The Adolphus was the vision of beer baron Adolphus Bush. An icon of Edwardian opulence, the hotel helped transform Dallas into a world-class destination with its museum collection of artwork, including Flemish tapestries, Louis XV chairs and a Victorian Steinway once owned by the Guggenheims.

The grand dining room, the French Room, is crowned with ‘two enormous Murano chandeliers dripping with hand-blown Venetian glass.’ Gilded arches frame a dramatic rococo-style representation of heaven on the ceiling, while polished marble floors ‘swarm with formally attired service staff.’ (The Dallas Morning News)

The next block is anchored by Neiman Marcus. Established in 1907, the flagship store put Dallas on the international retail map, featuring exclusive fashion lines delivered with the gracious charm for which the 35 stores are now famous. "Poppy" Myron bought a new outfit and shoes for Wayne’s three-month-old nephew, Connor. Open downtown Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. until 6 p.m. On Thursdays, the store is open until 8 p.m. to accommodate late shoppers.

This afternoon, we’ll visit the Dallas Museum of Art, the Nasher Sculpture Center, and the Dallas Arboretum.

Now, I understand why Wayne and Lauren like it here!