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Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

Tuesday I turned my computer to write a Christmas blog. Just as I started I received word that WWII Bataan Death March survivor Billy Templeton passed away (see previous blog).

Tuesday evening I received a Christmas email from Linda Ward of PR Pro. It included the following poem by Robert Louis Stevenson. He expresses the prayer I wish for each of you so much better than I can, so please enjoy.


A Christmas Prayer

by Robert Louis Stevenson


Loving Father, help us to remember the birth
of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels,
the gladness of the shepherds,
and the worship of the wise men.
Close the door of hate and
open the door of love all over the world.
Let kindness come with every gift and
good desires with every greeting.
Deliver us from evil by the blessing
which Christ brings, and teach us to
be merry with clear hearts.


May the Christmas morning make us happy
to be Thy children, and the Christmas evening
bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts,
forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus' sake. Amen!




Merry Christmas and God Bless! Billy, we're thinking of you!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Billy Templeton

I just received word that Billy Templeton, a WWII Bataan Death March survivor, passed away today.

Billy lived through the Japanese attack on Clark Field in Manila on December 8, 1941. He was sent to Bataan and later captured. After a horrific death march, the Japanese shipped him to Manchuria via a "hell ship." He spent the next 3 1/2 years as a prisoner-of-war working in a Japanese factory.

Just a few short years ago, Joyce Faulkner and I helped Billy tell his story in the book, Manila Bay Sunset: The March Into Hell.

As he relived the horrors of the war years, Billy taught us so much about bravery, survival, hope and the indomitable spirit of the human heart.

I'm sure God had a special spot in His heart for Billy. Our sadness at losing Billy is lessened by that knowledge.

I believe that God will hold Billy close for all eternity. My sympathy is with his wife Lou, his family and all who loved him.

Billy, we love you!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Sometimes We All Need a Pep Talk

Whatever the time or season, we all benefit from positive thoughts and inspirational messages. My son Mark sent me a link to a presentation that gives us a pep talk with a dose of humor. Check it out at https://www.uptimeamerica.com/.


Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Books Make Great Gifts

Need an idea for that special someone? Books make a great gift for the readers in your family.

During Veterans Week, seven authors traveled to Branson to receive medals awarded by Branson Stars & Flags Book Awards. Joe Bonsall of the Oak Ridge Boys and Eddie Beesley, a Vietnam veteran, presented the awards, along with Eddie's wife, Connie.

Bonsall and Beesley won awards last year. Award presentations were part of the Opening Show on November 5 at the Mansion Theater. You can check out more info on each title at https://www.bransonstarsandflags.com/. Denzil Batson's title, Korea: We Called It War is available in both book and DVD format.

Del Staecker – Gold Medal for The Lady Gangster, Nonfiction
Denzil Batson – Silver Medal for documentary Korea: We Called It War
T.H.E. Hill – Silver Medal for Voices Under Berlin
Tom Ruck – Grand Prize and Gold Medal for Sacred Ground, Photography
Jim Staley – Silver Medal, Come In, Swanee Leader, Photography
Erwin Thompson (WWII Vet) – Gold Medal , Worth Remembering, Poetry
Deborah Tainsh – Silver Medal, Heart of a Hawk, Inspirational

All the books are excellent reads and would make great gifts.

Of course, I must mention my latest title, The Sharon Rogers Band: Laughed Together, Cried Together, Crashed & Almost Died Together. Check out https://www.sharonrogersband.com/ to order this or any other of my books.

Joe Bonsall's book, GI Joe & Lillie, is the story of his parents. Eddie Beesley's book, Lucky Enough, is an autobiography about the injury in Vietnam that costs him both his legs, and how it defined his life.