Happy Memorial Day!

Posted on May 31, 2010

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I’d like to say “thank you” to a few people in my life who have made a difference by serving in the military at some point in their lives. Here goes:

My Hojo

Howard Joseph Rogers III (my boyfriend), Army Airborne. “Hojo” served in Afghanistan after training at Fort Benning for Airborne school. For a good idea of where that is, watch “We Were Soldiers” and/or read “We Were Soldiers Once, And Young”. Hojo won’t tell me what he was, I think he was an E3 coming out. He’s stubborn like that.

Howard Rogers II (my boyfriend’s dad), Army Airborne. Served in Vietnam and reached E7, Sergeant First Class, but was honorably discharged as an E6, a Staff Sergeant.

David Tibbs at a Memorial Day ceremony

Lieutenant David Tibbs (my uncle), Army Airborne.

My Uncle Dave is the youngest son of my grandmother Tibbs, and most entertaining :-D. My Uncle Dave always quotes famous people. In particular, he quotes his father, my grandfather, Howard Arthur Tibbs. “It’s not what you know, it’s how you write it down.” I always remember Uncle Dave teaching me how to write my first letter to my dad.

This is a small photo of my Uncle in uniform at a local cemetery for a Memorial Day ceremony. I do believe this was my senior year in high school. My high school’s marching band, concert band, and symphonic bandmates marched from Newark High School to this cemetery. Sometime, a reporter/photographer took this photo of my uncle. Take a look, very closely. See what’s in his sunglasses?

My Grandfather, Tuskegee Airman

Most importantly, I would like to thank my grandfather, Howard Arthur Tibbs (1919-1986). His birthday was actually September 24th, but when I was born, as my folks tell me, he changed it to my birthdate, September 23rd.

“Tibbs was drafted into the Army Air Corps in 1943. He became a Tuskegee Airman in the 477th Medium Composite Group (MCG) (Tibbs). Tibbs was a side-gunner on a B-25 Mitchell, a Damage Control Photographer and Developer with the 477th Medium Bombardment Group (Tibbs). Tibbs also was trained to be a Machine Gun Mechanic (Tibbs).” Information from my father, Clark Tibbs, for my last history paper while attending OSU for my undergrad in Psychology.

My grandpa was a graduate of Salem High School in Salem, OH and has been honored by the Salem Historical Society. He was a saxophonist and flautist. He’s played with some of the greats including Duke Ellington. I currently have his Artley flute… which could use a good tune-up. On March 28th, 2008, my grandfather and his comrades were honored with the United States Congressional Gold Medal of Honor.

Heh, I was just looking up more stuff on my grandfather and I found this video on YouTube of my grandmother  Tibbs and her third son Philip Tibbs. There’s one that follows it as well. You can also read about his and his family’s musical history at this site, The Columbus Senior Musician’s Hall of Fame, Inc.

Also, my grandfather, Paul Eugene Lieber was in WWII. He was a pilot in the U.S. Army Air Corps, he learned to work on aircrafts, and he flew a P-51. The U.S. did not officially have an Air Force yet. I have the most memories with “Krackaw”. My cousin Jennifer called him that when she was little and it stuck. He passed on November 28th, 2001. He live long enough to experience 9/11. I have wonderful memories of him. He was quirky and humorous and always came up with wacky little rhymns that I wish I had written down. He’d sit in his leather chair that was just big enough to fit his boney physique and my li’l cuteness right next to him. We’d watch wrestling because he thought I liked it. I watched it because I thought he liked it. The last movie we watched together was “The Sandlot.” To read more about my memories of Krackaw, check out Rockin’ Sydney & Krackaw’s Shoes.

Though I don’t know a whole lot about my Uncle Bob’s involvement in the military, I do know he was a Medic. That job had to be absolutely invigorating and intense. He saw his comrades face incredible extremes.

My Uncle Scott, as my mom mentioned, served on the Roosevelt Air Craft Carrier in 1970 as a Sailor specializing in Electronics in the tower.

I’m extremely proud of all my family members who have ever served in the United States military. It’s scary to think that at any time, they had put themselves at risk for the sake of keeping those of us at home safe. I wouldn’t have known my boyfriend, Howard III and his dad, Howard Jr. Uncle Bob would have not gotten to experience the wonderful wife and children that he has. I wouldn’t have gotten to learn how to write my first letter with Uncle David. I wouldn’t have had a cute picture of me and Grandpa Tibbs, me with a little baby doll by its foot and he with a pipe in his grinning mouth. I wouldn’t have gotten to dance on Krackaw’s shoes. All these men have been extremely supportive of me.

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