Nothing But Norman #92

Happy Saturday All!

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This coming Wednesday the 22nd of April is Earth Day.

It is also a day that I will remember forever, it is the day my dad died. Maurice Ray Bradley passed on April 22, 1994 when I was just 23 years old. So I hold Earth Day close to my heart and give back when I can. My dad’s ashes are scattered on what used to be “his property” which is now my brothers and I. We have a memorial there because besides my dad’s ashes being there my mom’s are there also. We plant tree’s there to give back to the earth for what it has given to us. My parent’s may no longer be with me but they are aiding in the growth and life of the tree’s so I find comfort in this special place.

My dad had a Chesapeake for a hunting dog when I was growing up. Trigger was the first dog that I got to go hunting with. I knew at that time there was no other breed for me.

My dad nor mom never got to meet any of our chessies in person but they met them many times when I would take the gang to this special spot to hang out with my parents. This is my go to place when I just need a moment to myself. The dogs love going to this place as it is tucked away in a back field surrounded by marshes, woodlands, cows and other wildlife so there is much to smell, see and check out without the everyday hussle and bussle of life. A place where one can go and have the memories of a life that once was and try to feel that moment again.

On 10/16/13 a couple weeks before Norman passed we paid a visit to this special place, just Norman and I. He walked over and visited with my mom and dad, he walked around the field picking up sticks and hauling them around as that was one of his favorite things to do. He sniffed the scrub oaks, sniffed the pines took in all the great smells that this earth provides. We said our goodbyes and I told him he would rest here one day when I have the strength to let a part of him go.

I have a number of pictures from this day, these are just a few, I will share more another day. These are my most favorite pictures of Norman that I look back on often. He photographed so well this day that I will remember forever and wish that I had my buddy with me again to visit this special place together again. One day buddy we will visit this place again and walk next to each other once again. Hopefully not to soon though as I have many things I need to finish up on earth.

 

 

“It’s only when we truly know and understand that we have a limited time on earth – and that we have no way of knowing when our time is up, we will then begin to live each day to the fullest, as if it was the only one we had.”
by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

We are joining Ruckus The Eskie and Earl’s World for Sepia Saturday.

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We are also joining The Pet Parade.

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Hosted by: Rascal and RoccoJan’s Funny FarmBasil the Bionic CatBarking From The Bayou and Love Is Being Owned By A Husky.

A Tribute To My Dad ~Part 2

Dad graduated from Pardeeville High School in June of 1964.

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I needed to add this next photo to show that learning is genetic. See the English grade? That is where I get my bad grammar, bad spelling, bad anything to do with English from!

Old Report Cards.

Old Report Cards.

After High School Dad joined the Army. 

Date of entry 1/18/66 Date of exit 10/29/67

spc5 (sgt) Bradley, Maurice Ray

spc5 (sgt) Bradley, Maurice Ray

During this time he was stationed in Kentucky, Virginia and California . Grandpa and Grandma took my dad’s car and drove to Kentucky to visit my dad.This was the first time Grandpa and Grandma went out of state, this would also be their only vacation. 

Visiting Dad.

Visiting Dad.

Dad's car.

Dad’s car.

This car didn’t stand a chance once dad got out of the Army. He got in an accident with it and it was no more.  

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Basic Training In Kentucky .

Basic Training In Kentucky.

Newspaper Articles.

Newspaper Articles.

Dad's Army Group.

Dad’s Army Group.

U.S. Army Transportation School

Dad went to Aircraft Electrician School while in the Army. He
completed the Aircraft Electrician Course 9/1/1966  and was 11 out of 20 with 81.9%. He would go on to use his electrical  knowledge in Vietnam fixing Heuy Helicopters. Since he was fixing helicopters he wasn’t on the front line so he was safe from enemy fire. Aircraft Electrician Diploma.

While in the Army Grandma wrote to dad EVERY day. She would write and put it in the next mornings mail. Dad kept every letter and when he got out he handed Grandma a box full of her letters. I know have that box of letters that I tried to put in order as to when written, that was a hard task as sometimes she wouldn’t write the year or she would only write ex: Wed am on the paper so then I would have to look at the post mark and figure out the date or it would say ex: Wed the 8th so then I would have to pull up a calendar from that year and see what months had Wed that were the 8th in them. I pretty much got them all in order minus some letters that were missing in Action. My Grandma kept all the letters that my dad wrote back to her and she gave me those too. Some of those are missing in action too that I hope to find one day when I have to go through Grandma’s house when she passes. 

Letters From WI.

Letters From WI.

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Before Being Stationed In Vietnam.

Before Being Stationed In Vietnam.

Letters From Vietnam.

Letters From Vietnam.

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1st Cavalry Division.

1st Cavalry Division.

The Chapel.

The Chapel.

The Bathroom.

The Bathroom.

The Heuy Helicopter.

The Heuy Helicopter.

Helicopter that shot gernades.

Helicopter that shot gernades.

Army Guys Entertainment.

Army Guys Entertainment.

I found many photo’s of dad and his Army buddy’s on leave at different places enjoying some entertainment. Found photo’s of dad with the girls from rock and roll bands that the girl’s scribbled a note and their name & address on the back telling him not to forget them. 

View out of a Heuy.

View out of a Heuy.

Don't Mess With MP Bradley!

Don’t Mess With MP Bradley!

Dad Saving A Rooster From A Cockfight.

Dad Saving A Rooster From A Cockfight.

The next picture isn’t a very good picture at all but it was the best out of the three photo’s I found that was taken with the Army guys and their YoYo’s that they got from a company in Illinois after my dad wrote them and told them they needed something to do while having down time in Vietnam. 

YoYo's from Chicago.

YoYo’s from Chicago.

Here is the letter the company wrote my dad a few weeks after they sent out the YoYo’s.

YoYo Letter.

YoYo Letter.

Money From Vietnam.

Money From Vietnam.

When dad’s tour was done in Vietnam and he got to come home he was coming home for good. He spent extra time in Vietnam so that when he was done he was done. He flew into Wisconsin, Grandpa and Grandma picked him up at the airport. They got there before the plane landed and when my dad got off the plane Grandpa cried, that was the first and only time my Grandma saw him cry. She says she will remember that day forever!

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After the Army dad joined the American Legion Post  282 in Markesan, Wisconsin.

Dad was a post commander for the American Legion in 1984, 85, 86, 87, 88 & 89.

I remember being a little girl and being able to go with dad to his legion meetings, they were held once a month on Monday evenings. I would sit there and listen to the war veterans talk and then there would be a break with snacks. Always loved the Bologna sandwiches they had there. When I was about to graduate from college I applied for the American Legion Scholarship and I got it! 

Each Memorial Day the American Legion post would march in the local parade and would have a remembrance ceremony in the cemetery for  all the fallen soldiers. This was one of my favorite holidays as I would get to put lilac’s on the cross statue that was made up for the veterans buried elsewhere’s or ones that didn’t make it home. 

Memorial Day Parade.

Memorial Day Parade.

Dad is the guy on the left.

Another favorite part of the remembrance ceremony is the playing of Taps. Hearing a Veteran playing Taps sends a chill threw my body and a tear in my eyes, especially when the gun shots are fired at the end.

TAPS

Day is done, gone the sun from

the lake, from the hill,

from the sky.

All is well, safely rest.

God is nigh.

Thanks and praise for our

days ‘neath the sun, ‘neath the

stars, ‘neath the sky.

As we go, this we know,

God is nigh.

Carlene Wojahn

Read A Tribute To My Dad ~Part 1