With Thanksgiving just a day a way may we each take the time to offer a prayer of thanksgiving and well-being for the men and women who are away from home this holiday serving our country. We are thankful to our veterans, who have served our country both here and abroad, throughout the years! They have led the way for the many dedicated young people who have made the choice to serve our country. Today, in this column, it is my great honor to say thank you to two very special young women. Rachel Thomason is the daughter of community resident Tami Thomason, and Emily Brodowski is the daughter of community resident Brian Brodowski. Rachel Thomason will be graduating from Army Basic Combat Training from Fort Sill, Oklahoma on December 8th. After graduation, Rachel will remain at Fort Sill to complete her Advanced Individual Training for her Military Occupation Specialty. Before joining the army Rachel worked at Oakdale SaveMart as a checker where she gained lifelong friendships with her co-workers. Rachel is a 2013 graduate of Oakdale High School. While at OHS, she was on the softball team all four years, participated in OHS drama productions, and made countless friends. Rachel is a former Valley Home resident where she was active in the 4-H club, she showed swine, rabbits, and lambs. She also served various officer positions, and was involved in many fundraisers and 4-H events. Rachel has always had a giving spirit, she wanted to serve and give back in one of the most wonderful ways possible, and that helped influence her decision to serve her country. Her family and friends are very proud of her and are excited to see her come home for the holidays!
Emily Paige Brodowski took her oath of enlistment into the US Army on December 22, 2016 at the age of 17. She signed for five years with the intent to stay as a career! Emily turned 18 two weeks into Basic Training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. She is currently training for physical therapy at Fort Sam Houston, Texas through May 2018. She will do a two month practicum somewhere within the United States. Emily will then go to her first duty station. She has chosen various places both within the United States and overseas, but will not know exactly where for a while. Emily has also volunteered to do a year of hometown recruiting. Always active throughout high school, Emily is an excellent speaker and no doubt will do a wonderful job as an ambassador for the Army in her home town. Emily and her sisters Mollie and Gabbie grew up riding horses and learning the skills it takes to have expert horsemanship. Emily always gives 100 percent to any activity or endeavor she is involved with. Her kind, caring personality and ambitious nature brings great joy to those who know her. Emily has a tremendous love for her family, friends, and her country. She is proud to serve! In a perfect world Emily will retire from the Army and take her love of horses to own a ranch where she uses horses to help with physical therapy. Her family looks forward to her visits home and are extremely proud of her!
To both Rachel and Emily, and the thousands of other service men and women, we are so thankful to each and every one of you. May your Thanksgiving be filled with many blessings, whether you enjoy Thanksgiving at home or far away! Your friends, family, and community will keep you close to their hearts and are so very proud of you!
As always you may reach me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Until next time, “Happy Trails to All!”