Monday, November 7, 2005
Rangers Lead The Way
Friday was an unusual day at the Evil Corporation where I work. We went out for Ranger Burgers. Okay, you're asking "What's a Ranger Burger?" It's a big burger. And not just any big burger. It's the specialty of the Four Winds Restaurant in Cusseta, GA, about 30 miles south of Columbus, and just a few miles off the post boundary of Ft. Benning. And Ft. Benning is where the 3rd Battalion of the 75th Ranger Regiment is located. Oh, and the Ranger School is at Ft. Benning, also. Anyway, we went to eat Ranger Burgers for lunch. The trip was also tied into "birthday lunches" for a couple of folks at work. So, we went on Friday. And Friday is the day that lots of Rangers normally show up at the Four Winds. And this past Friday was no exception. After we were seated and orders taken, a group of 21 Rangers came in and sat near us. The boss, sitting across from me, mentioned that he wished he could buy lunch for them all. I watched the Rangers as they got up and got their drinks. I was looking for their rank insignia. And found what I was looking for. I saw a Staff Sergeant (E-6) who was ranking man there, and said I wanted to buy lunch for one of his men, and for him to pick the man. He thanked me and spoke with the other NCOs with him. In a little bit, a young soldier, a Specialist (E-4), came over and introduced himself. He asked if I was indeed offering to buy lunch for one of the Rangers. When I said I was, he told me he was the one picked, since he was the newest Ranger in the group. He thanked me and took off his Ranger patch and gave it to me. (That's a picture of it at the top of this post.) When I was in the Army, I never even tried to qualified for a Ranger patch. Heck, no way could I have made it through the school. Even had I been younger, I wouldn't have made it, much less as a 30-year-old soldier. Anyway, I never earned one of those patches. And I didn't earn one Friday, but that young soldier was appreciative and showed his appreciation in a most meaningful way. The boss witnessed that, did a count, and went around to the others in our group individually and privately, and asked who was interested in buying lunch for a Ranger. Not all were, but enough were that our group was able to pay the $172 tab (plus tip) of the Rangers. They thanked us personally for that. But, like I told the sergeant and the specialist, we are the ones who thank them for what they do. If you have the chance to encounter a Soldier, Seaman, Airman, or Marine, tell them thanks. And, if things are such that you are able to buy their lunch, spend a few bucks for a good cause. And, if you don't see one of our men or women in uniform, keep Project Valour-IT in mind, or help with another way. But keep our troops in your thoughts. There are enough people in this country that do not appreciate (or deserve) our military. Let them know how much they are appreciated by you.