Wednesday, September 20, 2006

How Real Americans Support Our Troops!

Operation Yellow Elephant salutes the Maine Troop Greeters and the real Americans of Bangor, Maine, and nearby communities.

This nonpartisan grass roots citizens initiative to Support Our Troops organizes local citizens to go out to Bangor Airport in the middle of the night to meet all military flights passing through. They wish the outgoing troops Good Luck and Godspeed and they Welcome the returning troops Back Home to America. And they really appreciate it.

“Thank you for your service,” one man said to a soldier while shaking his hand. “Welcome to Maine,” another greeter said.

“I think I’m going to cry,” a female soldier said after being hugged and cheered in the terminal.

Lt. Col. Eric Shalita, 43, used a cellphone and got some free food, helping himself to a powdered donut after calling his wife and two daughters at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. “It was amazing,” Colonel Shalita said. “We were completely not expecting this.”

“It’s nice to know that people genuinely support us,” he added.

Staff Sgt. Stanley Siaosi, 26, was tired from the trip and missed his wife and children, who live at Hill Air Force Base in Utah. Sergeant Siaosi said the greeting made him resolute about his mission.

“This is really motivating for us to go out there and do our job,” he said. “You come here on the other side of the U.S., and there are greeters there ready to shake your hand. It gives you that patriotic feeling.”

“This is really good for the young kids,” Chaplain Jeff Neuberger, 56, said as he motioned to a room filled with baby-faced soldiers. “It’s one little gesture, but the support means everything to these guys and gals.”

[And we certainly hope they assume that anyone old enough to die for his or her country is old enough to have a beer.]

Thank you, Bangor and the Great State of Maine!


At 20 September, 2006 16:44, Anonymous Anonymous said...

[And we certainly hope they assume that anyone old enough to die for his or her country is old enough to have a beer.]

"If you join the Army today, you are not helping to defend this country. You are helping an elite group of people practice a form of economic imperialism." - Karen Kwiatkowski

At 21 September, 2006 14:56, Anonymous Anonymous said...


At least the civilians in the photo are clearly not eligible to serve in the military.

They're doing what they can, and the troops really appreciate it.

At 21 September, 2009 13:11, Blogger josh said...

Thats great, another form is giving care packages, I always loved getting care packages on deployment

At 18 October, 2009 16:40, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Col. Karen's right.


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