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Sunday, June 28, 2009

Retirement Ceremony...

Finally! The long awaited retirement photos! Between all the excitement that's been going on around here Ive had to upload as I could. So here it is. I felt that because Rick had given 25 years to our country he deserved attention to detail for this post. I have made a lot of notes and included 2 videos highlights. Hope you enjoy! Feel free to leave a message for Rick at the end.

Rick arriving

I just think this one is funny. I think he is laughing at the fake gun in his face! Whoever set the chairs up didn't leave very much room at the front for the color guard to do their thing. When she was doing her gun twirling she nearly hit me twice!

Uncle Larry smiling for the camera!

Captain Catanni giving Rick one of his many certificates.

This is Ricks friend Danny. If it weren't for him Rick wouldn't have had a ceremony at all! THANK YOU DANNY!
End of service (or is it tour) award.

Me getting my "he couldn't have done it without you" award.

From right to left-Dawn is filming, then there is Wes and Sue his wife (Ricks cousin), Christy and her Dad Jack.

The kids getting their "the Navy thanks you for supporting your Dad" award.

Rick giving Steph flowers...

...and his Mom too.

Giving the kids an awesome plaque. This is what it says:

A Sailor's Son (Daughter)

In your life you've made sacrifices, served your country, and with grace and courage supported me.

You are the "Silent Sailor"

Lovingly and silently you shouldered a heavy burden that few are asked to carry. At times you could not comprehend my absences, and why I was not physically there to support you as the son(daughter) of a sailor s lot has been acquired of you. There have been many special occasions I have missed because of my job. I have missed holidays, birthdays and special occasions. You've changed schools, said good-bye to friends and had to be the "new kid" again and again. Through all this you gained self confidence and my respect and admiration as you grew. Some days you cried openly, some silently and forced a smile for the world to see...but at all times you supported me. You are and always have been one of the most important people in my life.

I am so very proud of you. Your love and support mean more the me than you will ever know. Every promotion and every accomplishment I've attained, you have been a part of. Your love silently gives me strength.

I respect you. I love you and I thank you for everything.

Love, Dad

June 12, 2009
And he gave me... a crystal heart, etched into it was a poem, a chain, a rose, and a ribbon...while it was read aloud.


Let this chain represent your strength that has overcome stress and strife.

Let this rose represent the beauty you've brought into my life.

Let the rainbow cast by the crystal represent the hope you've kept alive.

And let the ribbon represent the love that kept you by my side.

But most of all, let this crystal heart represent my return from the sea, home to my love, my wife...home at last to stay with thee.

All my love,


and let me tell you how much I was crying by the end! I got choked up just typing it!
Giving his speech that was in a previous post.

Presenting his shadow box.

The next part was a flag ceremony. I have never seen this done before and it was very touching! The video of it is below...

Then he did something that totally caught me by surprise-he handed the flag to me! (more tears of course)

This is one of Rick's buddies, Chris Bailey.

And then came the time for Rick to request permission to go ashore. He had a VERY hard time doing this. He hesitated & tried to a few times, even had a bit of a tear, until someone told him, its hard to hear on the video below, but I think they said for him to ask permission at his leisure. That lightened the mood enough for him to turn to Captain Catani & ask permission.

He just cant get it out.

Being piped ashore.

And now the family being piped ashore.

I love that smile! I think once he has done it for a while, he will like living like a civilian.

Friends and family: On the left if Rick's cousin Sue, then my life long friend Christy (we have known each other since we were 5!) and her Dad Jack. He is also a retired submariner!

The shadow box.
During the reception we played the slideshow I had made of all the photos I could find of him in uniform, along with a few of his awards. Before we began it Danny read a little note from my Nanna (he mentions her a few times in his speech).

Here is her note:
There are so many mempries of times spent with you and Roni: visiting you in Hawaii, Family Day tripsin San Diego, the sub bar in San Diego, the days spent with Rine and the kids when you were at sea, and meeting the boat when you came home. They are all close to my heart.

We,, Rick, now you can do what all retired sailors do after dinner-sit in your easy chair, a bottle of beer in one hand, and think of "The Good Old Days."

Once in a while look over your shoulder and see the long line of our family men that have served in the U.S. Navy through the years since 1919 until now. It was a great day when you joined the group and our family.

I am very proud of you and your accomplishments. Through the years I have watched you, Roni and your family carry on the traditions of Navy life.

Myrna had a guiding hand in showing you on your way. She did her job well.

When you sit in your easy chair, hane a bottle of beer in each hand-one for you and one for me.

Thank you for becoming a part of our family.

I have two requests: a toast to all the Navy men in our family and a toast to the Wahoo! (and we toasted)

I love you,


Then we watched the DVD...

Back at the house my friend Chris Taylor (no relation) who is a photo buddy and took all these (and the others in this post) awesome photos for us, took a few more with family...
All of us-the Mom on the left is my step-Mom Vicki and on the right is Ricks Mom.

...and now for the party pics!!

It was a beautiful day full of emotion and we will never forget it.

1 comment:

Dawn said...

This isn't about the retirement....
Justin I wanted to wish you a very Happy Birthday belated.... I hope your year is filled with good things and lots of fun.... I can't believe you are 21 yrs now.... WOW! Time has flown.... Best, best wishes always.... GBU!
Love & Prayers,
Dawn & Ed