Monday, June 28, 2010

Flying High into the Sky

I grew up the daughter of an Air Force officer. As a child, my life was filled with blue uniforms and the roar of jet engines. Some of my earliest memories are of drums and taps and nights at the officers club with men and their wives warbling, “Off we go into the wild blue yonder…” My mother was blessed with one of the world’s most godawful voices, but she loved to sing that song.

I heard that song again this weekend, when I watched through tear-swelled eyes as my older daughter graduated from COT (Commissioned Officer Training School) at Maxwell Air Force Base in Montgomery, Alabama. My mother has been dead for three months now, my father for nearly nineteen years. But how I wished they could have been there, too, to share that moment. I know they’d have been as thrilled as I was.

Sam is currently in medical school and will go on active duty as a doctor when she graduates. I am very, very proud of her. Since Steve and I started writing thrillers, I’ve found it ironic how many people have acridly questioned our patriotism simply because our vision of what this country’s future should be doesn’t match theirs. My father was an Air Force colonel; my husband is a retired Army colonel; my sister was a Marine captain and her husband a Marine major. Now my daughter is an Air Force Second Lieutenant. We have always been a military family. And so it begins again.

Congratulations, Second Lieutenant Proctor.


Steve Malley said...

Awesome! I knew your family was military, but never to that extent. That's fantastic!

orannia said...

Congrats to your daughter! That photo is gorgeous BTW!

And I find it fascinating the different branches of the military your family has served in. Dinner conservations must have been fascinating *grin*

Barbara Caridad Ferrer said...

Congratulations, Candy, to you and your daughter.

And personally, I think it shows your level of patriotism that within the freedom granted within fiction (a freedom so many other cultures don't enjoy) you get to question and probe and imagine different scenarios.

Charles Gramlich said...

That's very cool. Congrats to one and all.

Sphinx Ink said...

Congratulations to Sam and to all of you. You are true patriots because you care about your country's future and you seek solutions to its problems, regardless of current public opinion. That takes courage and it exemplifies love of country.

cs harris said...

Steve, I have to admit we're not your typical military family (except maybe for the Marine contingent...)

Orannia, I do have two gorgeous girls. And yeah, we do hear a lot of goodnatured kidding about whose branch is best.

Barbara, thanks. And it's true, the freedom novelists have to explore ideas is something to cherish--and guard.

Thanks, Charles.

Sphinx Ink, thank you. We do care, very dearly.

Pax Deux said...

I miss out on many excellent post recently, but aparently came back at the nick of time...
I too am an Air Force brat (Lt. Colonel father), with a brother who followed in his fathers footsteps to become a military doctor, and thoroughly enjoy your particular patriotic perspective! Congrats to all!

Lainey said...

Congrats 2d Lt Proctor! A high achiever from a family of achievers. What a great future you have ahead of you!

Bernita said...

Your family walks the talk.
( i have two in uniform)

Susan/DC said...

Congratulations to you and your daughter. She's clearly smart and dedicated, and this country can use many more people like her. You are clearly proud of her, and she just as clearly deserves it. My oldest son served in the Army and is now getting a Masters in Social Work so he can treat military personnel in need. I know how I'm overcome with pride when I think about him and what he does, so I have a sense of how you feel.

cs harris said...

Pax Deux, that's neat. And thanks!

Lainey, thanks, from Sam.

Bernita, hope they're well.

Susan, that's wonderful that your son will be working with troubled military personal. You should be proud.

sweets in bulk said...

Wow... This is great! Congratulations! I can say that you did a great job and wish you all the best. Thanks for posting!

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Anonymous said...

I served in the Air Force as an Operating Room Technician and loved every moment of it. Love seeing people serve our wonderful country as we help them become successful doctors. Thanks for sharing this picture.

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