The strength of family, the strength of a Marine

I met Gray when he was 16, so it’s a little hard to believe Colleen’s little brother (now my brother-in-law) is old enough to defend our country. Apparently the Marine Corps doesn’t find it hard to believe because they’ve found a spot for him in Iraq for the next 6 months. This will be his first overseas tour, as a First Lieutent and a pilot, and we are all very, very proud of him.

I don’t really know what it’s like to be a Marine Corps wife. Jeff was in the Reserves and he was out by the time we got married.  I do see the pride, though, when I talk to my mother-in-law, Caroline, about her role as a Marine Corps wife to my father-in-law, a Marine Corps Major General. I witness the honor at every Marine Corps ball I’ve ever attended (yes, I got to meet the Commandant last year!) I feel the love and support every time I look at Gray and Katie, practically still newlyweds. I feel proud as I watch them buying a beautiful house that she will make into a home while he is off defending his country.

Gray and Katie, on a visit to Charlotte a few months ago.
Gray and Katie and me during their visit to Charlotte a few months ago.


Gray has email. I don’t know how often he will have access to it, but thank God we have that lifeline to him. Katie is already keeping us updated at every moment about where he is and how he’s doing.  And although when I look at Gray I sometimes still see that teenager who was more than willing to snag us some beers from a cooler at a certain Fourth of July party so that we could play drinking games, I also see a Marine. And I am proud.