Gig Line: Let’s talk

Published 8:07 am Thursday, October 20, 2022

Gig Line makes me think about my sweet Billy so much. No mistake about it, his love for the Lord and our great country – our U.S.A. – was as clear as a bell. We worked together every week in that he would help me bring to the surface his own, but very guarded, feelings as a Vietnam veteran. I’d ask his opinion and he would always critique my writings; correct me if/when it was needed and smile when I read aloud my final draft. Then he’d lean over and kiss me and almost always say, “Thank you babe” or “I love you.” Each column you read would mean a lot to my Billy (in Heaven); and I hope he would be proud that he still inspires the Gig Line that he helped create.

I thank God every morning and night when I say my prayers that He loved me enough to bring Billy and I together. And while my heart aches for the sound of his voice, his clean Old Spice manly smell, his strong shoulders and well, just everything about him, I feel blessed beyond words to have shared his life for all the years we were together.

At this juncture in my life, seeing so much disruption, turmoil and chaos across our land, my heart aches. It’s my desire to write only positive, happy uplifting stories, because I genuinely want to; yet at times when reality sets in, it’s obvious I need to vent.

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And just so you know, I don’t blow off the time you spend reading what I write, nor do I take you for granted. My columns are usually long and at times you may find yourself yawning – I hope not – but when I write, it’s as if you’re sitting in front of me and we’re having a chat, exchanging our ideas, thoughts, fears, hope for the future and our views of how to fix the world, as if we know how to. I think all of us wish we could, don’t you?

Frankly, I’m sick of the concept and driven narrative of hate, racism and other phobias too many to count and the very thought that anyone could even consider that it would be okay to allow a precious little baby to be killed the day before its birth is unfathomable. What in the heck is wrong with people? If you disagree with me, stop reading right now. Because like my old cartoon favorite, Popeye, used to say, “I yam what I yam!” He was a character with character!

Can we just get back to being real and stop with all the silliness of being afraid that every word we speak out of our mouths will “offend” someone? We’re not dummies; we know what references are unacceptable on any given day to speak to or about others. But this “thing” is like a plague and ridiculous whereby we’re expected to adopt a whole new set of life rules in order to live and function. Gee whiz! Can we get a grip for goodness’ sake?

It seems to me we are creating robot people; diminishing honest dialogue and communication between each other and creating paranoia to say the wrong thing to the wrong person at the wrong time. It seems that we need to walk slowly in big fluffy bedroom slippers as if on eggshells rather than sports shoes that give us good support and endurance for the long haul.

I’m just appreciative that I know what life was like when we left each other alone to be who we were; when we loved each other and when we didn’t try to recreate those around us or make them afraid, timid or ashamed or to feel subservient. Something has been happening before our very eyes and it has made us numb or crazy, I don’t know which. Our poor precious children who are growing up seeing more crime on the news, more sex promotion at incredibly young ages … dear Lord, what have we done?

Soon it will be time to vote and I pray for each one of us who take the time to fill out the ballot, not for the sake of the “party” but rather for the sake of our nation. For the concept of principal, conviction, integrity and common sense. It seems that too many things are getting out of hand and its concerning to say the least. With just under five weeks to go, think it through thoroughly, research what each candidate stands for and what they stand against and by all means, please pray about our choices.

Patty O’Sullivan (V.S.O.) Dare County veteran service officer has been a busy bee collecting for our cellphonesforsoldiers.com cell phone drive and to date we have collected (thanks to you all) 103 cell phones and three tablets, which Patty shipped to Georgia in the last few days. That’s awesome! They’ll be refurbished and provided to our soldiers and veterans. Yay! Yippee! Our Dare County Veterans Advisory Council members embraced this campaign and were eager to promote this worthy cause and the opportunity to benefit our heroes.

Thank you so much, everybody, for working to make a difference. As you know, the locations where the collection boxes to deposit your old, used and even broken cell phones in are at various sites around Dare County. No matter how cracked, ugly or pitiful looking your old cell phone or tablet might be, the phone itself or its parts can be transformed into a blessing for our men and women who serve, so please drop yours in if you no longer have a use for it. You can find the collection boxes at the Thomas A. Baum Senior Center (KDH); Virginia S. Tillett Community Center (Manteo); Fessenden Center (Buxton); Dare County Parks & Rec Center (KDH) and as of this coming Tuesday, October 11, you can find one at the Dare County Administrative Center (Manteo) where you go to vote. Thank you in advance for your help!

Veteran’s Week isn’t far off now, so please check your U.S. flag at home and your business to make sure it’s in good repair and if you haven’t purchased one yet, please consider getting one. It’s such a beautiful reminder of our strength and resilience as a nation as well as our pride in our red, white and blue!

If you have questions about a health matter that could be service connected or if you want to discuss a potential V.A. claim, please contact Patty O’Sullivan either at her office (252-475-5604) or her work cell (252-473-7749) and she’ll do her absolute best to assist you. If you’d like to talk to me, I’d love to hear from you so either call/text my cell (252-202-2058) or email me at giglineheroes@aol.com. Also, if you’d like to read previously submitted Gig Line columns, please search www.giglineheroes.com.

Don’t forget folks, November is when we hope to receive an official decision on whether Dare County Veterans Advisory Council will get the opportunity to host “The Wall That Heals” at some point in 2023! As I said, we won’t know until November, but I’ll keep you all posted as soon as we are notified one way or the other. Let’s hope and pray. It would be such an honor and an unforgettable event if the Outer Banks is one of the areas that is chosen.

I’ve been listening to recordings of Vietnam veteran testimonies and as a listener I was cautioned in advance that it was a straightforward recollection of their experiences and, basically, hard to hear. I have to tell you – it made me wonder how many times my husband may have wanted to talk to me (or somebody) about his experiences but until the last two years he never felt he could. That makes me sad. I would have listened to his every word; I would not have bombarded him with questions. I would have just let him vent and, very likely, we both would have cried. I told another vet (who did not serve in Vietnam) how I wished I could have learned more about Billy’s service over there and she said she thought Billy wanted to protect me, keep to himself the horrors he had seen and that it was because he loved me.

Until next time, be healthy, safe, and happy! I love each one of you and wish everything good for you and your families! If you are a veteran, God bless you, thank you for your service and your sacrifice. We are and will remain in your debt always. Stay tuned!

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