I met Steve in second grade. Like any red-blooded American girl would, I fell instantly in love with him. I spent grades 4-6 planning my wedding to him and writing in my diary "Andra Redd, Mrs. Andra Redd, Andra Lynn Redd". I think Becky and I almost came to fisticuffs over our mutual Steven love at times :) Although our love affair was ill-fated, our friendship was not. Steve has remained my friend for 30 years. The last time we spoke, we had a particularly good conversation and gratefully, we both said how much we appreciated our life-long friendship. I am honored to have known a man full of such integrity, humor, and kindness. I am grateful for his service to our country. I will miss my childhood friend dearly. However, I know for certain that the thought of his smile will bring me happiness for the rest of my life. Godspeed my sweet friend.
August 10, 2011
Yesterday, as if it were a tribute meant just for Steven himself, a special aired on the Discovery Channel. It followed a group of soldiers as they attempted to endure training for 160th SOAR, the Night Stalkers. I knew these soldiers were the cream of the crop, I had no idea how specialized, trained, brave, selfless, and just downright strong these men really are. I was stunned at all they went through, and that 35% of the class failed or dropped out before graduation. I found myself staring at the television, jaw dropped and speechless for an hour at what these men did for five weeks. I could't help but see Steven in every successful soldier, feeling even more awe and pride at what Steven did for our country. It made me appreciate that maroon beret so much more, the one Steven wore so well and with so much honor. If anyone gets a chance to catch this amazing show, you won't be sorry you spent an hour getting a small glimpse into what Steven's career consisted of.
August 20, 2011