Theodore's World: Project Valour IT: The Few, The Proud, The Marines!

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October 30, 2006

Project Valour IT: The Few, The Proud, The Marines!

2006 Project Valour-IT Competition Starts Today


For those of us that love our Marines and appreciate all they do. Those of us that have Marines in our family this is a great opportunity to say thank you.

Because some of you have sons and daughters serving now, I want to give you an opportunity as well to donate to their branch with Project Valour IT.

Army would be Blackfive

Also Army at Argghhh!!!

Navy go to Chaotic Synaptic Activity

Air Force fly over to OP FOR

But it would also be nice if you also give to the Marines. I mean who doesn't just love the Marines.

Dates: From October 30th until November 10th (a day rich with significance for many reasons, not the least of which is that on that day in 1775 the United States Marine Corps was founded by the Continental Congress) Theodore's World or also known as PC Free Zone will carry the battle colors for the Project Valour IT Marine Corps fundraising team.

What is Project Valour IT all about, you might ask?

It's grateful Americans, providing laptops with voice-activated software for severely wounded troops. The story behind this project is a moving one:

Project Valour-IT began when Captain Charles "Chuck" Ziegenfuss was wounded by an IED while serving as commander of a tank company in Iraq in June 2005.
During his deployment he kept a blog. Captivating writing, insightful stories of his experiences, and his self-deprecating humor won him many loyal readers. After he was wounded, his wife continued his blog, keeping his readers informed of his condition.

As he began to recover, CPT Ziegenfuss wanted to return to writing his blog, but serious hand injuries hampered his typing. When a loyal and generous reader gave him a copy of the Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred software, other readers began to realize how important such software could be to CPT Ziegenfuss' fellow wounded soldiers and started cast about for a way to get it to them.

A fellow who writes under the pseudonym FbL contacted Captain Ziegenfuss and the two realized they shared a vision of creating libraries of laptops with voice-controlled software that could be brought to the bedsides of wounded soldiers whose injuries prevented them from operating a standard computer. FbL contacted Soldiers' Angels, who offered to help develop the project, and Project Valour-IT was born.

In sharing their thoughts, CPT Ziegenfuss and FbL found that memories of their respective fathers were a motivating factor in their work with the project. Both continue their association with this project in memory of the great men in their lives whose fine examples taught them lasting lessons of courage and generosity.

If you're a blogger, you can sign up and join a team here. You will get button code so your readers can make a donation (see below) that will be credited to your team.

If you wish to donate, you can use the button below or the one in my sidebar, or send a check (with MARINES in all caps on it!) to:

Soldiers' Angels
1150 N Loop 1604 W, Suite 108-493
San Antonio, TX 78248

Other ways to promote:

* Blog and email your friends about Valour-IT and the competition
* Tell your friends, family and neighbors about Valour-IT
* Challenge your co-workers or employer to match donations
* Consider involving clubs, churches, or charitable organizations you are involved with. Maybe your church would designate all or part of a Sunday collection. How about Scouts?
* Post flyers around your neighborhood
* If you have any contacts in the media (local or national newspapers, radio, TV, PLEASE spread the word! Point them to the Project Valour IT site

Project Valour IT offers a way for us to tell them we have not forgotten their sacrifices, and that is truly priceless.

A little about my why

All the men in my family served in the military. My husband was in the Navy, as well as two of my Uncles Andrew and Greg. Another, Uncle Steve was Career Army. Then Uncle Ed and Uncle Alex were Air Force. Bringing in the Marines, my family had 5 that chose the Marine Corps. I wish I had photos of all of them but I only managed to get one on my last visit home.

This photo is Uncle John, he was a Marine all the way. Is there any other way to be? (big smile). He served in several wars, and lost his right arm and left left in the last one he was in (Vietnam).

Two of my Aunts also served as Nurses during WW11.

My Father was a baby during WW1 and just a tiny bit too old to serve during WW11. A year before Pearl Harbor, as my Father wrote in his company journal, his factory went to war. He wrote of the war clouds gathering and threatening the security of the United States. How the country began to plan for defense, a year before Pearl Harbor and how business owners and factory owners offered their factories to the government.

His words went on........." And then you know what happened? The day the bombs fell on Pearl Harbor, since that day boys were marching away. The service flags appearing in the windows on streets and seeing some of those stars in the flags turn to gold. I will never forget seeing these things.

So our factory went to war. Our factory is one of the first in America to manufacture war goods, and I know others will follow. Our men and women had worked pridefully before, but when we turned the factory into helping in the war effort we all worked together for the lives of our sons and brothers because they depended on each piece we made. I could see the light shining in their eyes. I could see their hearts talking through their hands as those hands sped this new work.

It is magnificent, and thrilling, the amount of work the men and women in my factory are doing, all with such excellence, and an ever growing flow of war goods moving from our factory to our military that need what we have for them.

Harry and his wife Elma knowing what they do might be used by their son Eric. Pete and Susan thinking their son’s life too might be saved by what we are making here and how they are a part of it. So many of my employees having sons serving in this war. I want to always know each one of their names.

What a day it was opening the letter “ This is to inform you that the Army and Navy are conferring upon your organization the Army-Navy Production Award for high achievement in production of war equipment.” This was a letter to all of us, to share with all my employees.

And what a day it was, Army and Navy distinguished guests, a band and you all know how I love bands playing. The Army and Navy awarded this Flag. Everyone in the company looked up as the Flag hoisted up the staff. Tears in all of our eyes and pride welling up in our hearts. And the men and women that did all the work I know they were proudest of all, I know I was proudest in them. It was a grim sort of pride though, hard to explain really, a pride that seemed to say “ you think what we did was fine, just watch what our boys are going to do.” And we will keep on making war goods until victory and peace are won. And then we’ll start again the work we put aside to go to war."

My Father is the one with the red heart above him.The Army - Navy E pennant was received by my Father along with all the employees at a celebation that day. Brig. Gen. Donald Armstrong presented the E banner to the entire company.

I tell you these things because all the branches are important not just to me, but to all of us. They all make a difference and all our Veterans from every branch are why I live in the land of the free. Our troops today need our support and how could we not be there for them when they are always there for us 24/7.

I chose the Marines to support in Project Valour IT because of Uncle John. I wish they had this for him when he was injured. Let's not let those in today's war be like Uncle John that could have used something so wonderful like Project Valour IT.

Posted by Wild Thing at October 30, 2006 03:55 PM


What a wonderful post, Chrissie!

Thanks so much for that walk through history. I always love to hear about those who went before us - it really gives you an appreciation for how much we owe. And thanks for supporting the Marine team :)

Posted by: Cassandra at October 30, 2006 07:53 PM

Thank you Cass and thank you so much!!

Posted by: Wild Thing at October 31, 2006 03:56 AM