Runtrails' Rocky Mountain Journal
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"Hale and farewell to the 10th Mountain Division National Reunion held August 2-5, 2007.
As the reunion comes to a close we salute them for their bravery and sacrifices. We also salute
and thank all of the brave men and women of each of America's military branches,
past, present, and future, for their bravery and sacrifice in the service of our country."
- from a full-page ad in the Sunday, August 5 Denver Post, sponsored by Rocky Mountain Orthodontics


Last year when I was doing Colorado Trail Segment 7, I had the honor to run through part of the old Camp Hale and see the memorials to the fallen heroes of the famous 10th Mountain Division on Hwy. 24 at Tennessee Pass. I did a separate entry about these brave men and women in the 2006 journal on August 8, exactly a year ago. There are lots of photos of Camp Hale as it was and as it is now, and information about the Division.

This past weekend there was a national reunion for current members of the Division, living World War II veterans, and their families. Because many of the veterans are now in their 80s and 90s, and so many have died since they were on active duty, we heard on the news that this is the last time the older veterans will attend the reunion. We are glad they had the opportunity to meet one more time and share stories with their younger counterparts, who I'm sure are inspired by these heroes.

We all should be inspired by them.

We rarely get into "politics" in this journal, but this news item just reminds us of how proud we are to live in this country. Despite all of our local and national problems, there isn't any other place where Jim and I would want to live.

I just finished reading the book by Walter Isaacson about Benjamin Franklin and the huge role he played in shaping all the major founding documents of this country. Jim's reading David McCullough's "1776," which is next on my reading list. It's so interesting to read about all the events that led to the formation of our country and the compromises back in the 1700s that resulted in the government and laws that we still have today (with modifications, of course). Our history really is amazing, and I appreciate it more now than I ever did when I was studying it in high school!

As I get older -- and since I'm married to an Army and National Guard veteran -- I also increasingly appreciate the freedoms we have and the sacrifices so many men and women have made to KEEP us free. We aren't thrilled about the situation in Iraq, but we certainly support our troops. We hope they will all come home soon. One of Jim's sons is due to be shipped back to Iraq in early September. We wish he didn't have to go. This is a very personal issue for us and our hearts go out to others who also have loved ones serving in dangerous places in the armed services.

Peace and happy trails to all,

"Runtrails & Company" - Sue Norwood, Jim O'Neil, Cody, and Tater

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2007 Sue Norwood and Jim O'Neil