Sunday, July 11, 2021

Surprises and a Farm Story

 


It started with an ad for Farm Implements. We needed some, the ad said they had some – and so we made an appointment to go check them out. The original owner didn’t happen to be there, but he had a neighbor let us in to see them.

You see, when you have a tractor, you start to think that you are a farmer, or maybe a cowboy, and then you start to think of all the fun things you can do with the extra attachments. And when you are the wife, you really start to think of all the things the husband can do…. You know – plow the garden, mow the fence-lines, rake the arena, dig some postholes…..

The gentleman who was showing us the tools started talking, and I started asking more questions about him. It was really fun to hear his stories. And then he said – I am a Vietnam Vet. That just perked my ears right up. So we started talking about Vietnam (the country), and Vietnam (the war). He told us how things had changed for him. What is was like to leave America at that time, and what it was like to come back to America at that time. He didn’t have a lot of anger in him, but you could still hear the hurt and the surprise that our own would treat him not so kindly.

After all – he was drafted by the country he loved, and he served the country he loved. 

As we went home to deliberate the purchase of some of these implements, I had a nagging feeling that he would be willing to accept a Quilt from us – a Quilt of Valor, a special hug that lets one know that they are appreciated, that we do recognize your service – and even better – says Welcome Home Son, Job Well Done.

I was in the middle of finishing up a Quilt, so I put the binding on it, washed it, labeled it and of course, made a pillowcase for it. Quilts in Pillowcases always make me happy. It’s like a little gift all wrapped up in some really cool fabric!

As we drove back the next day to get the items we wanted, he helped us load, and of course, I got to talking with him. He told me even more stories, and what a great story teller he was. I then said – Well Sir – I brought you something. I pulled that Quilt out of its pillowcase and told him the story of it. And of course, let him know that this particular quilt was for him. It was my little way of saying Welcome Home.

You know it was only 100 degrees outside, but I’ll be, he was so ready and willing to have that Quilt wrapped around him – and then he stood there – and told me another story. All the while he had a little precipitation coming down from his eyes.

Best Farm Deal I have ever made.

35 comments:

Kate said...

What a wonderful thing to do for this veteran. It's good to hear that someone finally said welcome home and thank you.

Kathleen said...

Such a great story! Thank you for taking care of him in this touching way. Welcome, home, soldier.

Pat said...

As a farmer I understand how that desire for farm implements can go. I also know some of the great people you can meet along the way and the great stories they may have. How delightful that you were meant to be in that place at that time and meet the veteran. I am sure he will treasure the gift of the quilt and learn that his stories are important as was his service to this country.

Texacan said...

I feel lots of times our paths cross with Veterans that "need" the hug of our quilts because they are supposed to. Thank you for all the amazing things you do for us as quilters and for the Veterans that you "quilt hug"!

Jan @Cocoa Quilts said...

What a great story! You just never know where each day will take us. It was beautiful that you listened and acted. thanks for welcoming him home!

Sara said...

It’s such a wonderful feeling to present a QOV to a deserving veteran or active duty soldier. Bless you!

Katy Sweigart said...

So beautiful! Moments like this remind me that it’s worth every stitch.

The Joyful Quilter said...

Touching story. Fabulous gift!!

Judy in Michigan said...

Love this story and love you for sharing our QOV love with him.

GBailey said...

Wonderful post and story. My eyes were leaking as I read this. You and the Vet were both winners.

Anonymous said...

Great story. Maybe you should have him write his stories down in a collection. We lose too many of them.

Caryn

Cherie in St Louis said...

Oh my goodness, what a blessing and an honor for you to be able to give this gentleman a warm thank you and welcome home.

Anonymous said...

There was some precipitation coming down from my eyes when I read your story. Thank you for your kindness to a veteran.

Delighted Hands said...

And now it is raining here, too....
Incredible act of kindness on your part to listen; our vets need us to listen. So glad you shared this post!

loulee said...

What a beautiful story. So sweet of you.

Unknown said...

Awww, that's why we do it. Great story! Another happy ending!!!

Anorina @SameliasMum said...

So beautiful. He's going to cherish that quilt, for always.

ginkgokid said...

Bless your generous heart. Your story touched me.

Donna M said...

Wow! What an awesome story. Thank you so much for sharing it and for wrapping him in love with a quilt.

Kathy E. said...

Some may call it coincidence or serendipity, but I think it was God who orchestrated this connection! This man needed to talk, to share and make a new friend. You filled his needs and I'm sure he never even once thought that any more would come of it! Just sharing his experiences would be enough. My older brother was on the front lines in Viet Nam and rarely talks about his time there. He was only 17 when he went. I'd love to hear stories to help me understand what it was like. You were blessed!

Donna said...

What a beautiful story!!! My first QOV went to a Vietnam vet. He is my sister’s horseback riding buddy. My sister awarded it to him and he cried so hard; said no one had ever thanked him for his service! My sister said she would never award another quilt because it was so emotional! Bless your heart Alycia!!! So glad this man got a quilt and a huge thank you!!!

sylviaweir.wordpress.com said...

My husband is a viet Nam Vet;he talks some about his time there but left out the part of coming home to protesters. I can't add to the comments about the QOV as everyone else has commented so wonderfully---but no-one mentioned your gorgeous photo.

Linda said...

How heartwarming! I love him too, and I'm so proud for what he did for our country and so disguised by what our country did to him. Thank you for showing him our appreciation! Hope you got some neat implements. :)

Linda Swanekamp said...

I wouldn't know a "farm implement" if it hit me on the head. You have the best stories. I am so grateful that the man could feel safe enough to tell you his stories. So grateful you had a quilt that could go to him in a timely manner. Thank you for sharing with us.

Neta R said...

My Hubby is a Vietnam Vet ---67 68. He was a Combat Engineer (meaning he carried explosives on his back and went in the tunnels to blow them up. He came back pretty messed up and it took 10 years to get sober and somewhat straightened up. He suffers from PTSD and pretty much stays home where it's quiet. I made him a T shirt quilt with the shirts from the Vietnam Reunions we used to go to. I help with the QOV group here and asked if he'd want one. No, he said, I have my T shirt quilt. THANKS for all you do for the Vets!

tealeafquilts said...

What a wonderful thing for you to do!

diana569 said...

Love this story, had the same reaction I did yesterday when I read it on FB, goosebumbs! Thank You for sharing and for everything you do for our group and our Veterans. You are such an inspiration! <3

Vicki in MN said...

What a sweet story Alycia!

Quiltdivajulie said...

YES YES YES - thank you for doing what you do and then sharing it with all of us. SUCH a heartwarming read.

Preeti said...

I am sitting in an airconditioned room as I type this and for some reason I can feel some perspiration near about my eyes too. What a difference you made, Alycia. You made him smile and feel warm and fuzzy - both inside and out. Big Hugs to you.

Astrid said...

What a wonderful and heartwarming story, very touching. He will cherish your quilt forever.

Quilter Kathy said...

I love that story! What a wonderful transaction... you got what you needed for the farm, and he got what he needed for his heart! And we got what we needed with the inspiration of how much a quilt can mean to someone!

Bonnie said...

Wonderful story -- you too tell a great story. Thanks for taking care of that Vet. I remember what the men and women came home to. I'm wondering if that was the only war where service personnel came home to hatred for their service.

Cheryl's Teapots2Quilting said...

And that is one of the reasons we make Quilts of Valor. Great 'hug' for him.

Vicki W said...

What a wonderful story!