Petals of Appreciation Campaign: Memorial Day


In honor of Memorial Day, this week’s “letter of appreciation” pays tribute to my Uncle Frank and all his brothers and sisters in service who did not return.

Thank you to all who served!
Thank you to all who served!

Forty-seven years ago this week, my father’s brother was killed in action during the Vietnam War. The 18-year-old Army PFC left behind a wife, infant daughter, parents, younger brother, and five sisters. His siblings tell stories about Frank and his habit of getting into mischief, playing pranks, and making them smile. I frequently wonder about the young man who made such an impact on those I love and the one he would’ve been had his life taken a different path.

We can’t change the past nor overwhelm our thoughts with “what ifs”, but we can carry with us the memories and stories of those no longer with us. It is with a heavy heart and a thankful spirit that I often think of the brave soldier who ran toward danger when so many run from it. What can I learn from the tragic and violent end to my uncle’s brief life? That I can’t wait for my life to take shape. I must treasure every moment, be present, follow my heart, and keep moving forward despite the unknown.

I wish I’d known you, Uncle Frank, and I know that somehow you’ve been here with your loved ones through all the joys and struggles since your spirit and body parted ways. You’re likely causing havoc in the afterlife with your parents and sister, but I hope you know how much you are loved and missed.

Join the Petals of Appreciation Campaign:


Each week, from now until June 30th, 2015, send one Thank You letter to someone who made a positive impact on your life: family member, friend, mentor, teacher, police officer, social justice champion, musician, actor/actress, writer, author…the list goes on.

Published by Kelly Deeny

I am a writer, singer, jewelry designer, and theatre enthusiast. I use various forms of artistic expression for personal reflection, community discussion and creative inspiration. My premiere novel encapsulates all of the above. Follow along on my journey towards an artistic career!

2 thoughts on “Petals of Appreciation Campaign: Memorial Day

  1. Kelly sweet heart, you did more than I can express. You have a very tender heart and I thank you for it. The now is important. Don’t wait for your life to take shape as you mentioned because it already has! Live life with your feet solidly planted on the ground and participate in it. In the work, the responsibility, the planning, the chores, the creativeness, the laughter, all of it. Without participating in all of it you end up missing something important ..

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