Greetings and Happy New Year!
I hope you and your family had a Merry Christmas and Blessed Holiday Season and are looking forward to a healthy and prosperous 2017.
Since our reunion in San Antonio last August, Ron Deverick and the Reunion Committee have been working hard preparing for the 63rd Annual Family Reunion in Savannah, GA, Aug. 1-6.
Savannah is such a wonderful, patriotic city that is full of events and activities for all interests. I was privileged to serve at nearby Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island for four years and my family and I regularly visited this military friendly city. A am looking forward to visiting Savannah and Parris Island this summer and seeing some wonderful sights in the "low country" and reconnecting with some great friends and neighbors. You will read more of our upcoming reunion in Savannah in tis and forthcoming CALTRAP issues.
A couple months ago, I listened to a double amputee Marine reflect on his journey from battlefield casualty in Afghanistan through life saving actions by Corpsmen and doctors, painful operations, recovery, and rehab to regain his mobility and life's purpose. He described reaching bottom while undergoing three operations a week, strung out on pain medication, and having his young wife leave him because she could not handle the stress. He went on to explain that his mental and emotional recovery came, not from counsellors or clergy, but from his buddies who came and sat with him. There wasn't a dry eye in the room as he talked.
His message is important for all military veterans to understand - somethings the best healing comes from a fellow veteran. As we begin this new year, let's each vow to do what we can to help a fellow veteran. Sitting with, sharing a cup of coffee, or a hand on the shoulder of a fellow Marine and veteran can bring greater joy and purpose to all of our lives.
Special thanks go to all who donated to the Association this past quarter. Although we are far from getting our income up to cover our annual expenses, your donations played a significant role in moving the needle in the right direction. I ask that you continue to make your donations in the envelope found in the CALTRAP newsletters. Also, please review the Legacy Giving page and consider adding the Association to your estate planning. Several of us have already done so, and it will help ensure the long-term viability of the Third Marine Division Association.
Thanks again to Ron Deverick and the Reunion Committee for their work in preparing for the 2017 Family Reunion in Savannah. Make your plans now to join us in Savannah.
David F. Bice
Major General, USMC (Ret)
President, 3rd Marine Division Association