Fruits of Your Labor

20 October 2007

Yesterday I decided to go for a late afternoon run around the base. My route goes for about five to six miles. My run takes me around the runway on the far western part of the base and then parallel to the runway and makes a turn around the eastern end. When I started to make my turn around the eastern end of the runway I looked across the dusty field just beyond the perimeter fence and noticed a small group of kids running around. However, the thing that caught my eye was a bright orange soccer ball being kicked around by those young boys. The evening was getting close and I didn’t have time to run back to my room to get my camera but I made a mental note of what time it was and decided to come back again today to get some pictures.   Early this evening I made my way up to the nearest guard tower where I could best position myself get some photos. I was grinning from ear to ear! All I could think of was “Look what all of you have done!” What an amazing sight. Right in front of my eyes were the fruits of your labor! Can you believe it? All I could do was smile.  


You can see part of the runway in the background. The boys are playing just outside of the fence and having a great time!  



I thought back on the past few weeks and tried to remember who I’d given an orange soccer ball to. I remember getting the bright orange soccer balls in the mail but I couldn’t remember giving one out. I asked the other Maintenance Test Pilot (Bob) if he’d given one out and he said he did. There was a bunch of kids who had come to the hospital and one of the medics I told about the soccer balls came over to my office and asked Bob if he could have a few soccer balls for the kids that were there. I’m so glad that he did. What a wonderful blessing it is to see these kids playing in the field and having a good time.

There hasn’t been much soccer playing outside the fence for the past few weeks because of Ramadan, but now that it’s over the kids are playing outside just about every evening.   Thank you everyone!   However, please remember that I’m ending OSC at the end of this month. This means that I’ve stopped asking for additional soccer balls to be sent to me. Please contact me if you have a special request and I’ll try to see if we can work something out. As of now, I estimate that I have about 500 soccer balls to give out. I have made arrangements to ensure that the soccer balls will be distributed. So please don’t think that they’ll end up in the garbage or anything like that.   There has been so much support in this project. Thank you everyone for your time and energy in making this so much fun for us! The money you’ve raised to send the soccer balls, the time you take to mail them and the letters and cards you write are a wonderful treat to all of us.

In the most sincerest way to say it…Thank You!  



2 Responses to “Fruits of Your Labor”

  1. MeganC Says:

    Your post brought tears to my eyes! I can’t tell you how wonderful this operation has been for our family and how much we have loved participating! I hope you got the most recent box of 4 balls that I send (and that extra special home-baked care package, too!) 🙂 As always, take care and stay safe! Megan

  2. jenny lando Says:


    PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE make a storybook of this extra special mission.

    Use the funds in whatever way you choose… perhaps take that lovely wife out to an extra glamorous couple’s day at the spa once you return home… but I would love to have your story and your pictures and your words bound up in a book.

    And I am so glad you are happy!

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