Sunday, September 02, 2007


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Growing up, my Papa Roy had a hard life. His homelife was rough and his prospects in the small Virginia mining town were bleak. At age 14, he forged a false birthdate in the family Bible so he could join the U.S. Navy right at the tail end of WWII.
During the next 3 years, he rec'd special training in diving and other skills that were precursors of the Navy Seals. When he was 17, the truth concerning his enlistment was found out and he was kicked out. During the following years, he would serve in both the army and the airforce plus be involved in the Korean and Vietnam wars. He was a helicopter pilot flying MASH missions in Korea, was shot down twice, and once was captured and spent time as a POW before escaping. In fact, it was during the beatings in the Korean war camp that Roy's kidneys were damaged...the kidneys that would eventually fail him and lead to some of the poor health and complications that resulted in his passing. So though he escaped the camp, the wounds inflicted were carried in his body and spirit for the rest of his life.
Roy was one of the untold numbers of soldiers who were willing to pay the ultimate sacrifice for their country so that you and I could live free.
Dany, of Children's HopeChest, sent me a tribute to Roy upon his death. I share her message with you here:
"As a retired Navy Girl I'm sending this to you - The Navy Hymn and wish Roy "Fair Winds and Following Seas".
May God Bless all of you.
Love, Dany
Eternal Father, Strong to save,
Whose arm hath bound the restless wave,
Who bid'st the mighty Ocean deep
Its own appointed limits keep;
O hear us when we cry to thee,
for those in peril on the sea.
O Christ! Whose voice the waters heard
And hushed their raging at Thy word,
Who walked'st on the foaming deep,
and calm amidst its rage didst sleep;
Oh hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea!
Most Holy spirit! Who didst brood
Upon the chaos dark and rude,
And bid its angry tumult cease,
And give, for wild confusion, peace;
Oh, hear us when we cry to Thee
For those in peril on the sea!
O Trinity of love and power!
Our brethren shield in danger's hour;
From rock and tempest, fire and foe,
Protect them wheresoe'er they go;
Thus evermore shall rise to Thee,
Glad hymns of praise from land and sea."


Drewe Llyn said...

What a lovely tribute! What a brave man!

So glad you guys are back home safe and sound.

Love and prayers!

Stephanie said...

Aw Elysa, love the memory and it was only last week. Papa Roy would have been proud of his sending.
Hugs Sister,

Elysa said...

Thanks, ladies.