6 of the XVII

It is official. The carving for Chad Frokjer will be done and delivered to his family on September 9th 2017 in Minnesota at his burial place.

This will be the 6th out of 17.


Things happen for a reason

While I am not a religious person I truly believe things happen for a reason. 

Today is just such a day.

I was just talking about the significance of the discovery of the USS Indianapolis last week and today we received SIX pieces of pier from Pearl Harbor that the USS Arizona was docked on that Fateful Day December 7th 1941.

Cole our trainer told us about Johnny who's neighbor at the the gym had received a large portion of them for a construction project. After the project was done, the owner allowed the leftover pieces to be given away. Johnny was looking for something to do with them which made me think of the amazing Anthony Thomaus Marquez his wood-carving talent and his mission of providing his Battlefield Cross #XVIIcarvings to his 17 fallen Brother's Families from his 2011 deployment to Sangin Afghanistan. 

Fate. 

Johnny has given us those pieces, we are giving them to Anthony to use in his mission and Anthony is in turn carving a piece for him and we will also receive a carving that we will auction off to help a K9 charity or charities near to our hearts.

The significance and magnitude and the lives that this passing chain of generosity will touch and the sheer awesomeness is not yet something that we can wrap our minds around yet. I think this will stretch beyond measure and I'm honored to be a part.


Monkeying around

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Strut hanging, like the twilight zone where he kept seeing a monster on the wing.

Jumped 4 times in the past 4 days. 
It's the only thing that takes my mind off things if just for a moment.


For Joel Wilmer

The presentation to 1st Force Recon Vietnam Veteran Joel Wimer yesterday in Kansas. 

Joel made a donation to XVII Carvings awhile back and this was my way of showing my gratitude. 
I even shaved and put my uniform on for the presentation. 
Only the third time I've worn it in 6 years. 

Damn proud to be part of the same Brotherhood as Joel and many others. 
Joel is the kinda Marine I admire and look up too. 
Thank you for everything and for all the support!

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www.lookevencloser.com

Friend of mine sent me this this morning. It was on a commercial on A&E.
It shows Tim Chambers with the little Marine with a carving directly in front of them.

This was back in May at Rolling Thuner XXX

http://www.lookevencloser.com


A finished Piece.

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We all see something, some see art, some see wood, and some see the meaning behind it. 

Myself, I see it all. 
I see their faces, the last time they smiled or laughed, the last time we talked, hearing the KILL number over the radio. Their motionless body being carried past me on a litter to the medivac chopper. When I look upon this I see that, and more. 
This is more then just a symbol, it is a representation of someone who inevitably gave everything in life up including their life. 

This journey is painful, and will never be easy. 
But I have to let the families know. 

This one I'll be presenting to a Vietnam Veteran, 1st Force Recon Marine. 
He made a generous donation too me awhile back and this is my token of appreciation.


For John Schulze

Yesterday, at Rina's first birthday party the Tulsa Air National Guard 138th Fighter Wing presented our family a wood carving dedicated to SMSGT  John Schulze  for his years of service made by 17 Carvings. The inscription reads the Airman's Psalm, "His truth shall be your shield. Do not fear the terror by night nor the arrow that flies by day." I find this verse so appropriate for the warriors and Christians that walk among us. John gave some of the best years of his life to the 138th and our family thanks them. Thank you to  Chad Parkey and  Nick Swainston  for making this presentation to our family. — with  Chad Parkey .

Yesterday, at Rina's first birthday party the Tulsa Air National Guard 138th Fighter Wing presented our family a wood carving dedicated to SMSGT John Schulze for his years of service made by 17 Carvings. The inscription reads the Airman's Psalm, "His truth shall be your shield. Do not fear the terror by night nor the arrow that flies by day." I find this verse so appropriate for the warriors and Christians that walk among us. John gave some of the best years of his life to the 138th and our family thanks them. Thank you to Chad Parkeyand Nick Swainston for making this presentation to our family. — with Chad Parkey.

Carving I did back in July was presented to the family of John Schulze yesterday. 
It's good to see where the carvings go and how they give if even the slightest comfort to families.


Thank you Samuel Dusenberry

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"In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie,
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
By Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae"

I started this back in April, and finished it yesterday, 20 hours total. 
Two days back to back, 14 hours this trip. 3 session altogether, the first session being done in April, and my memorial on my upper right arm is complete. 

Thank you again to Samuel Dusenberry for always going above with your artwork. Love the piece man, it came out even better then I imagined. 

The poem was written by a Doctor in WWI, the poppies represent a sign of remembrance after so much death and destruction on the battlefield.


Not today, IED.

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6 years ago today shortly after this photo was taken. I found an IED, only problem was. I was standing directly on top on it. 
It was an RF2F remote Det.
The Marine in front of me had a guardian on. Either the guy wasn't there to set it off or the guardian jammed the single. 
After EOD came and took care of the situation, the report stated it was a 15lbs jug of HME. 
I do consider myself lucky on more then one occasion from that deployment.