"Sharing can be a way of healing. Grief and loss can isolate,
anger even alienate. Shared with others, emotions unite
as we see we aren't alone. We realize others weep with us."
~Susan Wittig Albert

Through our writing, we walk out of the darkness into the light
together, one small step at a time, recording history, educating
America, and we are healing.
~CJ/Todd Dierdorff

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Comment: God Bless the Marines

The following comment was left this evening on an article written by David Westfall on March 30, 2011, God Bless the Marines.  It's from Darlene Brandafino-Claus, the mother of the Crew Chief on the flight that crashed at K-Bay.  She did not include an email address on her comment so I could not write to thank her, but the comment was so heartfelt that I wanted to make sure everyone gets a chance to read it.   My thanks go to Darlene.  May Ronnie have a fast recovery -- Welcome Home, Ronnie.  And a special thank you again to David for writing such a wonderful article.


I am the mother of Cpl. Ronnie Brandafino, the Crew Chief on the flight that crashed at K-Bay on March 29th.   Ronnie was three weeks away from completing his 5-year committment to the Marine Corps, and he was due to come home for good on April 17th!

He has been my hero for so many years of his life.  He was even before the Marine Corps, but most definetly since joining and especially now, as I watch him struggle through the tragedy and the injuries he was left with.

I'm eternally grateful to his Marine Corps family who stood by our sides, to the Doctors who saved his life and his leg, though he has a long road ahead of him.   He is special and strong and motivated to heal and walk.

Thank you for your kind words and thoughts.  Ronnie is currently healing at Walter Reed and will move over to Bethesda when he is ready. He is an amazing young man, an Amazing son, and an amazing Marine. His fallen brother is carried in his heart -- they were like brothers.   In every picture of them, they are laughing. Jon's family is forever in my thoughts and prayers.

~ Darlene Brandafino-Claus
Very Proud Marine Mom x2

“I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will.” ~Everett Hale

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