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I'll be wearing mine…

December 17, 2007

(Another one of those emails sent to me that I felt compelled to pass along and because I am a sucker for this stuff check out this link to the You Tube video. Oh and those of you calling out this ‘scam’ or ‘hoax’ don’t bother. I don’t care where it started or what it was, what it is now in this format is cool as hell and meaningful in my opinion.)

 

 

RED SHIRT FRIDAY’S

If the Red shirt thing is new to you, read below…

Last week, while traveling to Chicago on business, I noticed a Marine sergeant traveling with a folded flag, but did not put two and two

together.

After we boarded our flight, I turned to the sergeant, who’d been invited to sit in First Class (across from me), and inquired if he was

heading home.

No, he responded.

Heading out I asked?

No. I’m escorting a soldier home.

Going to pick him up?

No. He is with me right now. He was killed in Iraq ; I’m taking him home to his family.

The realization of what he had been asked to do hit me like a punch to the gut. It was an honor for him. He told me that, although he didn’t know the soldier, he had delivered the news of his passing to the soldier’s family and felt as if he knew them after many conversations in so few days.

I turned back to him, extended my hand, and said, Thank you. Thank you for doing what you do so my family and I can do what we do.

Upon landing in Chicago the pilot stopped short of the gate and made the following announcement over the intercom.

“Ladies and gentlemen, I would like to note that we have had the honor of having Sergeant Steeley of the United States Marine Corps join us on this flight. He is escorting a fallen comrade back home to his family. I ask that you please remain in your seats when we open the forward door to allow Sergeant Steeley to deplane and receive his fellow soldier. We will then turn off the seat belt sign.”

Without a sound, all went as requested. I noticed the sergeant saluting the casket as it was brought off the plane, and his action made me realize that I am proud to be an American.

So here’s a public Thank You to our military Men and Women for what you do so we can live the way we do.

Red Fridays. Very soon, you will see a great many people wearing Red every Friday. The reason? Americans who support our troops used to be called the “silent majority.” We are no longer silent, and are voicing our love for God, country and home in record breaking numbers. We are not organized, boisterous or overbearing.

Many Americans, like you, me and all our friends, simply want to recognize that the vast majority of America supports our troops. Our idea of showing solidarity and support for our troops with dignity and respect starts this Friday — and continues each and every Friday until the troops all come home, sending a deafening message that … every red-blooded American who supports our men and women afar, will wear something red.

By word of mouth, press, TV — let’s make the United States on every Friday a sea of red much like a homecoming football game in the bleachers. If every one of us who loves this country will share this with acquaintances, coworkers, friends, and family, it will not be long

before the USA is covered in RED and it will let our troops know the once “silent” majority is on their side more than ever, certainly more

than the media lets on.

The first thing a soldier says when asked “What can we do to make things better for you?” is. “We need your support and your prayers.” Let’s get the word out and lead with class and dignity, by example, and wear something red every Friday.

153 Comments leave one →
  1. December 17, 2007 5:14 pm

    I know the decision of the jersey is left up to the starting pitcher but is this something the Red Sox could do. Wear the red jerseys on Friday’s.

    I’ll be wearing red as well on Fridays from now on.

  2. philciallela permalink
    December 17, 2007 5:14 pm

    The fact you put that on there speaks volumes

  3. maroddy permalink
    December 17, 2007 5:28 pm

    Curt,

    This is something I’ve been doing for several years now. Thanks for spreading the good word!

    Margaret

  4. pennstater89 permalink
    December 17, 2007 5:39 pm

    Crying down here in NJ … wow …

  5. December 17, 2007 5:52 pm

    Our idea of showing solidarity and support for our troops with dignity and respect starts this Friday — and continues each and every Friday until the troops all come home, sending a deafening message that … every red-blooded American who supports our men and women afar, will wear something red.

    Umm… is this satire?

    If not, I’m pretty blown away by your willingness to take such a controversial stance. I’ll be eagerly waiting to hear whether you come out for or against puppies and rainbows, and back it up with a similar commitment to wear certain clothing on certain days of the week.

  6. December 17, 2007 5:58 pm

    I will wear mine. My nephew is in Fallujah….

    My daughter and I will wear our red, proudly, as we protest the war in Iraq. We may not agree with the reason they are there, but we love and support every single member of our US Armed Forces and are very proud that we have so many who volunteer – and may have to make that ultimate sacrifice.

    For those who have friends and/or family overseas, here is a great site that offers free email turned to mail delivery to our troops: (I’ve snipped the email address as it is so long) http://snipurl.com/1vfo8

    Kyle, if you read this, stay safe, stay alert, and come home safely. Love, Auntie

  7. top1tony permalink
    December 17, 2007 6:11 pm

    I will proudly wear red every friday. My best friend is still in Baghdad. SSGT Paul Bohn. Im so proud and pray for him every day and yes HE is a SOX fan.

  8. jbran66 permalink
    December 17, 2007 6:17 pm

    Very fitting that it’s the color red that’s used to signify our support of America. The Nation just keep on growing. I love God, this country and the Boston Red Sox (and in that order 🙂

    Merry Christmas Curt, Shonda and family…

  9. pet0606 permalink
    December 17, 2007 6:23 pm

    Hi Curt;

    Its Nancy from the Arizona ALS golf tournament. Yoou caught my attention with this one and tugged the heart strings. Jeff and I will be honored to follow in suit.

    Nancy

  10. kossox permalink
    December 17, 2007 6:49 pm

    This is a great note Shill, I have a question for you. Do you think it is possible to find the war and our criminal in chief repugnant but still support the troops? I fall in that camp and will proudly wear my red, redsox sweatshirt on Friday.

  11. boston07 permalink
    December 17, 2007 6:58 pm

    Thanks for the information! I have two brothers serving in the National Guard. One of them is leaving for Afghanistan in January, for eighteen months. It is really cool that I can show my support so literally.

    I will be wearing RED every Friday.

    Thanks for all the support you give our armed forces. And good luck next year!

  12. December 17, 2007 6:59 pm

    Curt. Thank you very much. Anything to support the troops, I am going to support whole-heartedly. Hooah.

  13. soxygrl permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:03 pm

    thank you for noticing curt.

  14. soxygrl permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:04 pm

    I’LL be wearing mine as well

  15. redsoxfan4ever7 permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:32 pm

    Curt you are amazing the people you meet and the stories you bring to the table are so great to read I really enjoy the stuff that happens in your life and that you talk about it. People really look up to you, I know I do…..Shane

  16. spider04 permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:40 pm

    I was somewhat moved by this post, a mixture of pride and sadness. While I don’t necessarily agree with the war…I do support the men and women fighting it…and I will be wearing my red on Fridays…

  17. scoop388 permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:52 pm

    Curt.

    Truly a touching story and I agree that it makes me proud to be an American just hearing about it.

  18. redsoxrmyheros permalink
    December 17, 2007 7:58 pm

    Thank you for this Curt. Our military men and women need all the support that is humanly possible.

    It’s the least we can do after all they do for us. Not only risking their lives every minute that they are away…but for the small things that go unnoticed by the vast majority, such as what you’ve posted here.

    My family and I have a rule that we live by: when any of us are out to dinner or getting coffee or having a drink, and if we see military personnel there also, we always pick up their tab. That is of they allow us to. We’ve had some that have turned down the offer, and their reason? “We don’t do what we do for recognition, we do it because it’s in our blood and we love our country”.

    What more needs to be said as to the integrity of our troops?

    Thanks for another great entry Curt.

    Hope you and yours have a safe and joyous holiday season!!

  19. texredsoxfan permalink
    December 17, 2007 8:05 pm

    thank you for sharing Curt! it’s really nice to have stories like this to keep life in perspective.

  20. msbay permalink
    December 17, 2007 8:24 pm

    Wow. Thank you for sharing that Kurt.

    Not sure if this was your intention, but the news that hit this Tuesday seems kind of ridiculous compared to the reality these soldiers and their families face.

    Believe it or not, there are many of us here in the SF Bay Area that support our troops. My prayers go out to all the families who who have loved ones overseas. Thank you!

  21. nlt88 permalink
    December 17, 2007 8:42 pm

    Great topic and story Curt!!! More people need to support our troops and let them know how thankful we are for their sacrafices. You are right in that the media is down-playing the support and despite what is said the “Majority’ does support them. I’m glad I have several red shirts ( all have names and numbers- Kapler, Lowell, Varitek and Schilling!!) in my wardrobe. Keep up the good work!!!

  22. luvdsox permalink
    December 17, 2007 10:12 pm

    Well done Mr. Schilling!

    I wanted to share one with you as well.

    A Different Christmas Poem

    The embers glowed softly, and in their dim light,

    I gazed round the room and I cherished the sight.

    My wife was asleep, her head on my chest,

    My daughter beside me, angelic in rest.

    Outside the snow fell, a blanket of white,

    Transforming the yard to a winter delight.

    The sparkling lights in the tree I believe,

    Completed the magic that was Christmas Eve.

    My eyeli ds were heavy, my breathing was deep,

    Secure and surrounded by love I would sleep.

    In perfect contentment, or so it would seem,

    So I slumbered, perhaps I started to dream.

    The sound wasn’t loud, and it wasn’t too near,

    But I opened my eyes when it tickled my ear.

    Perhaps just a cough, I didn’t quite know,

    Then the sure sound of footsteps outside in the snow.

    My soul gave a tremble, I struggled to hear,

    And I crept to the door just to see who was near.

    Standing out in the cold and the dark of the night,

    A lone figure stood, his face weary and tight.

    A soldier, I puzzled, some twenty years old,

    Perhaps a Marine, huddled here in the cold.

    Alone in the dark, he looked up and smiled,

    Standing watch over me, and my wife and my child.

    “What are you doing?” I asked without fear,

    “Come in this moment, it’s freezing out here!

    Put down your pack, brush the snow from your sleeve,

    You should be at home on a cold Christmas Eve!”

    For barely a moment I saw his eyes shift,

    Away from the cold and the snow blown in drifts..

    To the window that danced with a warm fire’s light

    Then he sighed and he said “Its really all right,

    I’m out here by choice. I’m here every night.”

    “It’s my duty to stand at the front of the line,

    That separates you from the darkest of times.

    No one had to ask or beg or implore me,

    I’m proud to stand here like my fathers before me.

    My Gramps died at Pearl on a day in December,”

    Then he sighed, “That’s a Christmas ‘Gram always remembers.”

    My dad stood his watch in the jungles of ‘ Nam ‘,

    And now it is my turn and so, here I am.

    I’ve not seen my own son in more than a while,

    But my wife sends me pictures, he’s sure got her smile.

    Then he bent and he carefully pulled from his bag,

    The red, white, and blue… an American flag.

    I can live through the cold and the being alone,

    Away from my family, my house and my home.

    I can stand at my post through the rain and the sleet,

    I can sleep in a foxhole with little to eat.

    I can carry the weight of killing another,

    Or lay down my life with my sister and brother..

    Who stand at the front against any and all,

    To ensure for all time that this flag will not fall.”

    “So go back inside,” he said, “harbor no fright,

    Your family is waiting and I’ll be all right.”

    “But isn’t there something I can do, at the least,

    “Give you money,” I asked, “or prepare you a feast?

    It seems all too little for all that you’ve done,

    For being away from your wife and your son.”

    Then his eye welled a tear that held no regret,

    “Just tell us you love us, and never forget.

    To fight for our rights back at home while we’re gone,

    To stand your own watch, no matter how long.

    “For when we come home, either standing or dead,

    To know you remember we fought and we bled.

    Is payment enough, and with that we will trust,

    That we mattered to you as you mattered to us.”

  23. rdsxfan4life permalink
    December 17, 2007 10:27 pm

    Thank you for posting this Curt. I had never heard of “Red Friday’s” before, but what a visible way for us to show support to our troops. God bless those who serve our country and may He bring them back home safely and soon.

  24. hawk40 permalink
    December 17, 2007 10:40 pm

    Curt,

    I support the troops too. I was one for 9 years. I just don’t support this horrible abortion of a war. I’d love to see how you and the other flag wavers feel if they bring back the draft. Will you be as supportive when your kids are sent to Iraq, or Iran or wherever else this thing bleeds over to in the next few years.

    Far-fetched? maybe…..maybe not.

  25. amiss1994 permalink
    December 17, 2007 11:03 pm

    Curt,

    As someone who has family serving in Iraq; I just wanted to take this opportunity to say THANK-YOU. Thank you for not only extending your

    sincere and genuine appreciation to Sergeant Steeley that day, but for writing this particular post. Its unfortunate that sometimes people forget

    the sacrifice our family/soliders make to protect this great country, and all the freedom/liberties that we as individuals have. It saddens me that our media only seems to focus on the negative aspect of war. What about reporting some of the positive influences that our American Soliders have had on the Iraq people ? Unfortunately, its all about the almighty dollar what sells and generates higher ratings. What’s not reported or generated to the American people is reporting all the wonderful and influential things that our soliders have been a part of; rebuilding schools, hospitals, education, or simply playing or tossing around a ball to some Iraq children. I’ve personally asked some my family members whether they agree or believe in this particular war. Their responses certainly have surprised/bewildered me. They don’t feel its their right to question their commander in chief. They will continue to go where told or asked, and continue to fight for a country they love and respect. There is that underlying and unspoken honor, pride and respect for what this great country stands for and the ultimate sacrifice they are willing to give to prove that their lives. How hard truly would it be for us as citizens to prove our support, respect and appreciation for the service they give ? Its the simple gestures like wearing red or sending a card/package that mean the most. I’ve been a Red Sox fan for 31 years now. Was 5 years old first time my father brought me to Fenway Park. I’ve seen alot of different type of people or personalities that have come and gone from that organization. The day you signed with the Red Sox was a great day

    not only for the organizations but for members of Red Sox Nation. We clearly not only got one of the most talented and hardworking pitchers of all time, but a sincere and loyal indivdual with true heart and character.

    Christmas is a time when we surround ourselves with the people we love and care about. When we appreciate all the blessings that have been bestoyed among us. How nice would it be this Christmas for people to take a moment and send a card to one of our recovering soliders. Can you imagine what it would mean to them & their families that we consider them a blessing.

    A Recovering American Solider- c/o Walter Reed Army Medical Ctr.

    6900 Georgia Avenue, NW. Washington, DC 20307-5001.Thank you again Curt for writing this and reminding people how appreciative we as americans should be and how easy it can be to show that appreciation and support. It means more then you can personally know.

  26. priscillapitman08 permalink
    December 17, 2007 11:13 pm

    Thank you for posting this. The President of the company where I work posted this about a month ago, and since then we all have been wearing red on Fridays, which is over 100 of red shirts. Even this little amount does help. I have a lot of military among my family and friends, they all appreciate this.

  27. December 17, 2007 11:58 pm

    Curt –

    As a former soldier in the US Army I understand and greatly respect what our soldiers do overseas. My neighbors husband just redeployed to Iraq right before his second child was born. She now is staying in the house with her sister taking care of two kids and is everyday awaiting the return of her hero and children’s father.

    This war has divided America in many ways, but to the majority everyone supports the troops, many just don’t support the war. Either way people feel about the war I think Red Shirt Friday is a great way to unite as a nation and to support what these truly brave Americans do for us and our freedoms on a daily basis. I hope everyone that reads your blog, fan or critics will take part in this endeavor and support the soldiers of the US military. I know I will.

    Especially around the holidays, lets make sure those wives and children, like my neighbor here in Maine see us doing our part to show support and appreciation for their loved ones doing their job overseas or here in country. Lets even take it one step further and try to help those families with what they may need over the holidays. Maybe its to talk, maybe its some money, maybe just a helping hand. Try shoveling their driveway, asking if they need anything, bring them a thank you card. Let them know that while they may go without their loved one this holiday, we appreciate the rights we have because of what their soldier is doing for us. Just do a good deed for that soldier in your community when you wear that Red Shirt on Friday and remind yourself what a great country we live in because of those brave men & women.

  28. jdnewsie permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:29 am

    Curt,

    Thanks for telling this story.

    JD

  29. dasfunk permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:31 am

    ::sigh::

    Not to be a wet blanket, but this is one of many internet-promoted “Red Fridays” campaigns that have been around for several years. Red Fridays have been encouraged to protest high gas prices, support Canadian troops stationed in Afghanistan, and any number of other causes.

    What’s interesting about this particular email that you’re promoting, Curt, is that it seems to be a combination of two well-established Internet mass-mailing campaigns – one promoting Red Fridays as a “Silent Majority” message of support for US troops, and a formerly unrelated “awareness” campaign promoting a gallant soldier’s flight home with the body of a fallen comrade. As these messages have spread over the years, the accompanying soldier’s name, rank and service body have changed – kind of like the old children’s game of “Telephone”.

    Like most internet campaigns, both of these contain bits of truth, and lots of fabrication. Think about the idea of wearing “red” on a particular day of the week, and you’ll realize that many people wear red on Fridays (and every other day, for that matter). It wouldn’t really be much of an effective campaign to encourage people to do something that millions of people would normally do anyway – for reasons like, uh, I don’t know, red is the only clean shirt they have left in the closet? If a campaign really meant to send a message, it would have to encourage people to do something that they wouldn’t ordinarily do anyway – so the action would stand out, and be unequivocal. Wearing red on a particular day of the week isn’t an effective statement.

    Curt – you’re going to get lots of these emotional, and sometimes gut-wrenching emails. If you’re going to promote and publish them, then the responsibility is incumbent upon you to check them out, first. You have too powerful of a soapbox to be one of the naive internet users who forward these things to “everyone you know”. I’d recommend spending some time with highly reputable and trusted urban legend sites like urbanlegends.about.com and snopes.com, where some pretty gallant researchers spend a lot of time hunting down the origins of the many internet mass-forwards, and attempting to verify the veracity thereof.

    In particular, I draw your attention to the snopes.com discussion of the “Howard Johnson” soldier story and the “Red Friday” story. I think you’ll find their coverage of these two campaigns interesting and informative.

    I encourage all of you who like to take up the challenge of “Forwarding This To Everyone You Know!!!!” to spend some time at those types of sites, familiarizing yourselves with how to recognize and put a stop to the bogus stories that swamp all of our email.

    Thanks for taking the time.

    das funk

  30. mclelliott permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:45 am

    Curt –

    That must have been a moving experience.

    That being said, I’m not sure what you mean by the “silent majority” who support our troops. It sounds a lot like the argument often used to imply that those of us opposed to this war do so out of malice towards our men and women in uniform. The vast majority of Americans oppose this war, and want our troops home as soon as possible. We want them home because we love them as family and friends, and because our leaders led us into this conflict without being honest and truthful.

    I have never seen the casket of a fallen soldier like you have, so I can’t speak from experience. But if I did, I’ll bet the first thing I would feel would be sadness, not pride. I would wish more than anything that this soldier did not have to give his or her life for this war.

  31. skinnyman2007 permalink
    December 18, 2007 1:38 am

    Hi Curt I work at Parris Island and I will pass that word along to wear red on Fridays to support all the Military and all the recruits that train at Parris Island. I tell the drill instructers thank you for serving our country. Curt could you send me an email to me and I will forward that to my boss on Parris Island to wear red on Fridays. My email address is riley101hot2000@yahoo.com Curt I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!. A former coach that coached my special olympics team he is in Iraq and I keep him is my prayers. Curt you should come to Beaufort SC to Parris Island and thank the Marines for serving our country. That would be cool if you did that.

  32. ctmcs permalink
    December 18, 2007 1:50 am

    This is a great idea but then any way to show our support for the troops is a great idea.

    I will always be amazed at how a majority of our society loves, respects and honors our service men and women but they never get all the press and it is the minority that gets all the attention. I know that the service men and women do not seek out the thanks and that they are not serving for any other reason than love and pride for our great nation but they certainly deserve and appreciate any heart felt thank you or word of encouragement.

    Curt, thank you for allowing us to use your blog as another avenue to say thanks to the service men and women for all they do for us and for the daily sacrifices they make.

  33. winrob permalink
    December 18, 2007 6:08 am

    That so so powerful. I am not for the war but I am very thankful for the TROOPS. I too will be wearing RED for out SUPPORT. Thanks for the down to earth post. It sort of ground you.

    Happy Holidays to you

  34. suesox permalink
    December 18, 2007 7:05 am

    Have press releases been sent out to newspapers? This is the first I’ve heard of the “Red Shirt” movement. I’ll join in; I think it’s a good idea. It’s one both Republicans and Democrats can support.

  35. sandmanq8 permalink
    December 18, 2007 7:47 am

    Curt, Just read your comments and as a Veteran(retired from over 20 years actuve duty) I really appreciate what you say and do to support these young men and women in the Uniform of our Country. I will do my best to get the word out to friends and family about the Red Shirt Fridays. They are the ones who need to know that Americans Do support them, we all go about our Normal day concerned not with what is going on in this world, but with only our personal daily lives. My wife is currently serving in Iraq, she is a LTC with a transportation unit, my son is preparing to deploy the first of the year with a civil affairs unit. So you know that I most definatley support them… Thanks again for all you do,

    God Bless, Sandmanq8

  36. ericbainbridge permalink
    December 18, 2007 7:58 am

    Curt,

    As someone who has served in the middle east on multiple occassions, I would like to say, “Thank You” for recognizing those of us in uniform. Once I returned from Afghanistan, I was medically discharged from the service. (as a side note, it was due to frostbite, but I’m OK). If you get the opportunity and I know you are very limited, but a line from you to a friend of mine who was wounded by a roadside bomb in Iraq would really boost his spirits. His name is Staff Sergeant Dan Pena and we served together in Alaska (near and dear to you, too). He lost the fibula in his right leg and his right arm was nearly severed at the bicep. Through the miracles of God Almighty and our medical team in Walter Reed, he has been able to keep his arm. He also has a young daughter back home in Texas. Please drop me a line at ericbainbridge@yahoo.com if you would like his contact information. Thanks again for what you do. Oh, and we know that the majority of the people in the country are supportive of us; just not the war.

    Thank You,

    SSgt (Ret.) Eric Bainbridge

    USAF

  37. rlgdguy permalink
    December 18, 2007 8:39 am

    God bless the USA!

  38. opinionatedcatch13 permalink
    December 18, 2007 8:53 am

    Curt I know exactly how you feel. There are many soldiers in and around my town. Right where Jim Rowe Lives in Newmarket. That is a sad but very important story. People need to stop and think about everyone else that is over seas and their family.

    Unlike people like Mark Cuban making movies against our soldiers, we the people of the United States know what it is like to struggle. We have gotten through tragedies before and now the USAF has asked us to wear red. We should be Wearing as much Red as humanly possible. Thank you for the story

  39. petey38 permalink
    December 18, 2007 9:26 am

    I am a Canadian who has a brother in the armed forces. Like you, I have always believed in supporting those brave men and women who are trying to make our world a better place.

    Canadians have been wearing red on Fridays in support of our troops for the past few years. I am a middle school Vice Principal and my students know why I wear red every Friday.

  40. December 18, 2007 10:21 am

    Everyone should be patriotic. No one should be nationalistic.

  41. the cuban buddhist permalink
    December 18, 2007 10:30 am

    Curt,

    I would like to thank you for posting this. Whether it is a true story or just one of those messages that takes on a life of it’s own is not important. It is the message contained in it.

    I do not want to get in an argument of who is more grateful or patriotic, but I will explain my view on it.

    I come from a family of immigrants, fleeing an oppressive dictatorship. I can never repay the freedoms and opportunities we were granted. But every single little thing I can do, I have dome, and will continue to do.

    Thank you for posting it.

  42. mpsoxg permalink
    December 18, 2007 10:38 am

    I would used to work on a Marine base and we all would wear red on Fridays to support our troops! I left that job 7 months ago and i still wear red ever friday to show the men that our country supports them and want them all to come home! I have many friends and i’ve had many close ones in the war and it’s great to see someone that i adore watching play baseball bring up this up!!! Curt you rock!!!

  43. mannyramirez1 permalink
    December 18, 2007 11:26 am

    Hey Curt,

    Very touching story. This is the first I’ve heard of it (always late to the party)

    I live in a huge military area (VA Bch, VA) so I will be sure to pass this on.

    Peace

  44. tboston permalink
    December 18, 2007 11:33 am

    I see that Brian Roberts has admitted to steroid use. As yet I haven’t seen a single person named in Mitchell’s report that has said the charge is false and has come out in public to do so. What say you? Sounds like this will have a snowball effect.

    I say that regardless of what you may think of Jose Canseco or his book, he hasn’t been proven wrong yet when it comes to the names he used and the names he’s talked about. It would be nice to see someone caught that was not actually guilty, but I am not sure that’s going to happen.

  45. soxfanpj permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:00 pm

    Curt,

    This story truly brought tears to my eyes. That said, I think you’re being extremely unfair in your comments that the media does not represent Americans’ support for the troops. As one who works in the media, I completely disagree – if anything, people in the press understand freedom better than many other Americans and appreciate the men and women in uniform who defend that freedom. And for those who don’t appreciate it, all it takes is an assignment abroad to see the lack of a free press in other countries.

    That said, supporting the troops does not mean supporting the war in Iraq. The media may well be representing the many people who are against the war. Bringing our men and women home as soon as possible can be viewed as showing them support, too. Especially the reservists who’ve left higher-paying jobs as they’ve been activated in the military and their families are feeling the pinch.

    Wearing red might help boost morale a little, but what would really help is to make sure that ALL our veterans receive the best care and utmost support financially and emotionally and physically when they return.

  46. beenthereb4 permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:05 pm

    God loves the American troops hunkered down against a barricade praying to Him as well as the innocent Iraqi parents shielding their kids from sharpnels from the barrage of shots from these very troops. GOD has had enough of the bloodshed.

    War is necessary….sometimes.

    This war has worn its welcome. There are no winners here.

    Bring the troops home. Period.

    Steel-town.

  47. fenwayrocks permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:31 pm

    Personally, I don’t think it matters that this “campaign” has been around before or was used for other things. The story may not be real, but in reality, sadly those things happen every day. The sentiment is still the same. I would go so far as to say wear red, white or blue on Fridays. Some people don’t wear red or have anything red and any of these colors help represent our flag and our nation. Anything we can do to show our support to the wonderful people who proudly defend us and our country is a good thing.

    Curt – I don’t necessarily agree with all of your politics, but I respect your patriotism.

  48. 99dawg99 permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:36 pm

    curt already said he doesnt care where it started, he likes the format it’s in now. and whats that crap about “having too big of a soapbox”…… this is a personal blog to express freely ones own ideas and thoughts. i dont think he has a responsibility to reserch everything he discusses. i dont rely on blog sites for factual content. as he’s surfing im sure he sees things that are interesting and he posts them and gives his take on them so we as fans and readers can discuss them. its not like he’s starting a cult or anything. show some respect for the troops fighting overseas. and just like everyone else, if you dont like the content of Curt’s blog then dont read it!!! you dont see me going to any a-rod or jeter sights because i dont care what they have to say. but at the same time i dont discourage anyone else from going to them. free exchange of thought and idea’s is one of the few true freedoms we have left, dont discourage it by being a pompous egotistical ass. Curt, say what you feel and the truth will shine through!!!

  49. thinkingfan permalink
    December 18, 2007 12:37 pm

    I am very curious about dasfunk’s (29) comments. I read this before the opening paragraph and YouTube video were added and really thought it had happened to Curt.

  50. December 18, 2007 12:40 pm

    War is hell.

    And the declaration of War must be used as a last resort – no exceptions.

    I only have the utmost respect for our (past and present) armed forces, and only become upset when I see how they are abused, their care decreased, and their overall respect and notoriety dragged through the mud on so many occasions.

    Hopefully I’m just cynical, because these men and women are doing what so many of us would never dream of doing.

    But everyone has to remember, in the end, there are no true ‘good stories’ from war – and any soldier will tell you there is nothing glamorous, or a ‘bright side’ to battle, it is grueling, tiring and thankless.

    So, to at least derail one tradition – thank you armed forces, and not only to our men and women, but all Services that exist around the world to offer protection to their own, and carry on the greatest tradition of mankind.

  51. December 18, 2007 12:45 pm

    And I hate to double post – but the Canseco post kinda brought this up in my mind:

    I both loathe Jose and admire him at the same time – I admire that he has stepped up and began this movement of uncovering the truth throughout the Major Leagues, the only reason he knows of this is from his own greed and selfish behavior.

    I mean, everything HE’s ever done was unnatural, cheated and a false representation of what he is actually capable of. Heck, the book was probably more for money than actual sleuthing.

    I just hope history gives Canseco his true form – the perfect embodiment of the ‘steroid/hgh era juiced player’ – Only thinking of themself, and not really worrying about who he has to walk over to make himself a dollar. And I do NOT mean to encapsulate the entire league, there are clean ethical players, however, there are also the ‘cheats.’

    And man, Jose is a perfect symbol of that.

  52. ctsoxfan permalink
    December 18, 2007 1:25 pm

    “As with other schemes intended to create a demonstration of solidarity or support for a particular group through some type of visual display, there is no truth or falsity to be uncovered here. If people participate in the suggested activity, it’s real–demonstrations need not be ‘officially’ organized or sanctioned to be symbolic and meaningful.”

    Put another way, if an entity as visible as the Red Sox chose to have their players wear those otherwise god-awful tomato-top uniforms on Fridays, and stated the reason they were doing so, it becomes meaningful, regardless of whether or not everyone flocks to participate.

    I’m all for the troops, Curt, and couldn’t be more against this war. Here’s hoping for the one thing we’re likely to agree on: that we can celebrate alongside the troops, HERE AT HOME, where they BELONG, someday very very soon.

  53. beenthereb4 permalink
    December 18, 2007 1:39 pm

    Curt,

    Should we go after North Korea and Pakistan??

    They are out there displaying their nuclear might with no “interruptions” militarily from us. The word ‘diplomacy’ always becomes the noun of choice when it comes to these countries. Saudi Arabia partly financed 9/11. Yet, we’re so dependent on its resource…you know what that is.

    Heck, what ever happened to Afghanistan? Isn’t Osama living there?

    So….has this war come down to the dirty word: OIL ??

    Bring the troops home. Period.

    Steel-town.

  54. andruww permalink
    December 18, 2007 2:25 pm

    “Americans who support our troops used to be called the “silent majority.” We are no longer silent, and are voicing our love for God, country and home in record breaking numbers. We are not organized, boisterous or overbearing.”

    Frankly Curt, I find this rather offensive.

    Who are you saying doesn’t support the troops? Me, because I don’t support “preemptive” wars? Or God forbid I voice such an opinion?

    Again, who are all these troop-haters that evidently have been running rough-shod over the nation?

  55. jonnyjbones permalink
    December 18, 2007 2:58 pm

    I would wear red to support our troops but I would never, EVER want to be confused with a warmonger. That to me would be much worse(not to mention less ambiguous) then not wearing a certain color on a certain day.

    If you really want to help the troops and not just be part of some vague nationalistic attempt to support an aimless war donate today to http://AnySoldier.com/

  56. Tom Field permalink
    December 18, 2007 3:27 pm

    Thanks for sharing the story, Curt.

    My cousin just came home from Iraq, and he’s going to get an opportunity a lot of his comrades won’t get — to spend the holidays with his wife and kids. I gave him a lot of thought while he was away. Now I’ll turn my thoughts to those men and women who won’t be coming home for the holidays this year — or ever.

    And by the way, anyone who criticizes your writing should read this last post you wrote. It’s a wonderfully poignant story. Well said, Curt.

    Happy holidays to you, Shonda and the kids.

    best,

    Tom

  57. greginpa permalink
    December 18, 2007 4:18 pm

    Hi Curt. That was a very touching story. Brought a tear to my eye. I’m not sure though who you mean when you say the ‘majority’ of people support the troops. I am someone who thought this war was wrong from the very beginning and thinks this administration lied us into it, but I support our troops 100%. I have never ever, not once, heard of anyone, anywhere, who doesn’t support the troops and appreciate everything they do for us. Support of the troops has been and always be 100%. Support of this horrible war and the unnecessary loss of life, including Sgt. Steeley’s comrade is a different and completely seperate story.

  58. jjmcs permalink
    December 18, 2007 4:19 pm

    Curt,

    here’s an interview from March of this year that was on WBUR. It’s only about 4 minutes long.

    http://www.here-now.org/shows/2007/03/20070316_13.asp

    Caring about our bravest and finest is an American value, not limited to party affiliations, religious beliefs or moral leanings.

    I wish everyone a peaceful and safe Christmas season.

  59. yuckthefankees permalink
    December 18, 2007 5:10 pm

    Well if that doesn’t make you tear up then you don’t DESERVE the freedom we have as American’s.

    Thanks for sharing that Curt.

    Thank you Armed Forces.

  60. bleedredj permalink
    December 18, 2007 5:34 pm

    Hi Curt

    I havn’t been to your blog in a while, but glad that I did today as your topic really hit home. I have no astute political observations or great insight to the politics of war or will not dissect what you or your guests have shared. I’m not that worthy. I however can appreciate and FEEL when a group of people are speaking from the heart. I can however speak to what I personally know and share with you.

    I have a son in Iraq with FOB Loyalty that I love very much. Do I think that he is a hero, Sure, I may use the word hero in a different context than you do as I know from my son a little about what he is seeing and feeling based on our weekly telephone and e-mail contacts. He has a laymans street sense of politics and similar to his Dad doesn’t claim to know the answers to such complex issues. Should there be war? When should we come home? What is this war about? He joined the Army trying to find his way in this world and found himself in Iraq where he accepts his station and works, sweats, and lives in a reasonable amount of fear everyday as he sees things that a young man should never have to see. I also would add that he sees and hears from Iraqi people including children how they feel safe when they are with our soldiers. Some of the topics that we discuss are limited by what he can tell me but here are a few examples.

    He has called on at least two occasions in a very depressed state to share that a fellow soldier has taken his own life.

    On one occasion, his call was cut short as a morter struck his compound.

    On another occasion, he told of a contractor that lost his life due to an IED. or the story of an Iraqi baby with shrap metal in its belly.

    I try to keep these conversations from his Mom and have him share the good times which there are and here are some of those:

    like a buddy who stuck his tongue on a bug zapper for 20 bucks, or shared pictures of things like:

    Sitting on one of Saddam Hussein”s personal toilets.

    Pics of his buddies dressed up with wigs and letting loose, playing dominoes in the barrecks etc.

    Pics of plastic lawn chairs that were retro-fitted as wheel chairs and handed out to the Iraqi people harmed in the war. but am mostly drawn to pix of the Iraqi children that John sends, there dress (western influence), there comfort zone with our men.

    I was touched by a story about how children in Iraq are brainwashed against our soldiers i.e.:

    My son serves with the 82nd Airborne and children are told by insurgents that when they see a soldiier with an 82nd patch , the patch means that they killed a member of their family, and if they see what is a combat badge this means that they have killed their mother.

    As John sends more pics I realize that they are winning the confidence of the Iraqis and their children and from my son I get the true sense that our soldiers not based on political fodder, what you or I may beleive, the media (Yuk), but are moved to be heroes by what they see, accomplish and feel in their hearts every day.

    Thank-you for allowing me the space to vent and share the humble experiences that have touched our family through this war. As a family we are brought closer together and have compassion for all the other families that share our anxieties and pride for our sons, daughters and soldiers particularly during the holiday season. Wear your red clothing, this is great.

    I would also urge you spend time with your family, hug and hold your children, and thank god that you live in a country that you can do all of the above in safety and solidarity. God bless all during this holiday season!

  61. December 18, 2007 5:57 pm

    Another great way to show support, is to send a soldier a holiday card. I sent one of mine to the following address:

    We Support You During Your Recovery!

    c/o American Red Cross

    PO Box 419

    Savage, MD 20763-0419

    This is the LEGITIMATE way to send a card to a recovering American soldier, as opposed to the Walter Reed Hospital address that has been floating around.

    While I don’t have enough red clothing to be able to wear red EVERY Friday, I show my support in other ways, most especially for me – in working side by side with Air Force members every day.

  62. ted5 permalink
    December 18, 2007 6:03 pm

    Great idea, Curt!

    Thanks for passing it along!!!!

    Ted

  63. gameboylosangeles permalink
    December 18, 2007 6:25 pm

    I was not familiar with the Red Shirt concept, and think it’s a great idea.

    Question is, can there be a way to wear something that states support for our troops yet not supporting the war?

    One does not have to support the war in order to support the brave, selfless men and women who fight on our behalf, protect us, and defend our freedom. Often the two are confused, or one is assumed as the other. That’s a shame.

    And, I, too, am a sucker for those kinds of videos.

  64. December 18, 2007 6:40 pm

    I just read the first ten or 20 comments in this thread. Mine was the only negative one.

    One of my favorite things about the Internet is the ability to engage in back-and-forth with people. But when you’re the only one snarking, it’s just inappropriate and rude.

    Not that anyone cares what I think about anything, but I’m sorry for my skeptical post above.

    I’d be pleased to argue about it a bit in the proper format, but there’s certainly nothing wrong with gestures of support for things we all value.

  65. kbksoxfan permalink
    December 18, 2007 9:19 pm

    I want to thank you for putting this out. Having many family members past and present in Army and Marines, it’s great for them to be recognized. It’s something I will do and I encourage many of my friends to do the same. It’s great that someone like you takes the time to care about other things other than baseball!

    Thank you,

    Jen

  66. davidkay3 permalink
    December 18, 2007 9:31 pm

    I’ll be wearing mine…while driving my huge 14 mpg hummer that requires tons of natural gas to drive! thanks Marines!

  67. mogorman permalink
    December 18, 2007 9:41 pm

    Dear Curt, I love that you support our troops and you are so right in that the support is not covered nearly enough. There are an incredible amount of people, behind our troops, that perform incredible deeds of unselfishness each and every day. As a proud Army Mom, I thank every one. The following letter was sent to me and I thought that maybe after reading whats in the hearts of Military families this holiday season, we can put aside politics even if it’s just for a few days…..

    Maureen O’Gorman

    Proud Mom of Spc. Daniel O’Gorman, Baghdad

    Christmas Letter To Iraq

    (Or anywhere else in the world our soldiers may be)

    Dear Husband; Dear Wife; Dear Light of my Life;

    Dear Mother; Dear Father; Dear Son;

    Dear Brother; Dear Sister; Dear Valued Friend;

    Dear Buddy; Dear Soul Mate; Dear One;

    Tonight my heart and mind are on you,

    As I gaze at our tree Christmas Eve,

    The angel on top is smiling down,

    And the lights are lovely to see.

    I am filled with thoughts of you tonight,

    I hope you’re not all alone,

    It’s not right for one to spend Christmas,

    Alone far away from home.

    Christmas candles are on the mantle,

    A scent of pine is in the air,

    I’ve spread greenery throughout the house,

    It looks like Christmas everywhere.

    There’s foil-wrapped mints in the candy dish,

    On the front door, there’s a wreath with a bow,

    And hanging near by on a ribbon,

    Is a sprig of Mistletoe.

    The outside lights are a real delight

    It seems there’s more around town this year,

    I’ve only put one in our window,

    And it’s there just for you, my dear.

    The turkey’s defrosting now in the fridge,

    It will be ready to cook Christmas Day,

    Side-dishes are mixed; the Jell-O is fixed,

    And the pumpkin pies are made.

    Extra leaves have been placed in the table,

    The usual crowd, of course, will be here,

    You know it won’t be the same without you,

    Oh my, how we’ll miss you, my dear.

    They say you’ll have a fine Christmas dinner,

    That the army will do it up right,

    I hope it is hot and you’ll eat a lot,

    And you’ll go to bed full Christmas night.

    I can’t tell you how much you’ll be missed,

    Although I miss you every day,

    But Christmas time is a special time,

    And you’re so terribly far away.

    I started this letter to cheer you,

    But now I fear I’ve made you feel bad,

    I’m sorry; I shouldn’t have done that,

    Please, honey, try not to be sad.

    Remember our Christmases of the past,

    Then think of the ones yet to be,

    We’ll spend this year in each other’s hearts,

    But next year you’ll be here with me.

    I pray each day to the Lord above,

    To protect you and keep you from harm,

    May you be surrounded by angels,

    And be safe and secure in their arms.

    None of us ever thought one day

    We’d be at war in a foreign land,

    They said it would protect us at home,

    Isn’t it strange? I don’t understand.

    I do need to tell you, honey,

    How very proud I am of you,

    And though it may sound trite,

    I need to thank you, too.

    I know, my dear, you’ve learned how to shoot,

    But before that, you learned how to love,

    So, when you can, aim with your heart

    And trust God’s guidance above.

    Now … if you are out on the road,

    Or dug into a ditch, with no light,

    Look up high; see that star in the sky,

    It’s the same star I’m seeing tonight.

    Years ago, a star exactly like that,

    Beamed down on the night Christ was born,

    It gave men hope then; it still does today,

    Merry Christmas, my darling, from home.

    Written by © Ginny (Virginia) Ellis

  68. soxarmy permalink
    December 18, 2007 9:51 pm

    Curt thank you so much for doing what you do, and I’m not referring to pitching…I am referring to being a model Christian and American. I am glad to know that there are others out there that love being American. Thank you. God Bless.

  69. warbler44 permalink
    December 18, 2007 11:01 pm

    Curt, your son going to serve? Send your kid to wars you say you support.

  70. depsean permalink
    December 18, 2007 11:27 pm

    hooyah

  71. b52murph permalink
    December 19, 2007 12:48 am

    Curt – Thank YOU for appreciating those of us serving in the Military; I’ve not deployed to the sandbox yet, but have volunteered to deploy previously, and honor colleagues every day who have it far rougher than those of us stationed in CONUS.

  72. youtalkfunny permalink
    December 19, 2007 2:08 am

    But I already have the yellow ribbon on my car. Haven’t I already made enough empty gestures?

  73. bigtlaw permalink
    December 19, 2007 2:08 am

    Curt……for god sakes, who doesn’t support the troups?

  74. byzantinelight permalink
    December 19, 2007 3:32 am

    Curt, I hadn’t watched baseball very much that is, until you came to Boston. You have made the game exciting and turned me into a rabid Red Sox fan. But your pitching is only half the story. Your high principals and moral leadership have brought a new light to all of New England. This posting only serves to prove my point.

    Thanks Curt! And I’ll be in red every Friday.

  75. daddyrex722 permalink
    December 19, 2007 5:27 am

    Hi Curt, I’m a 1st time poster so I hope I’m doing this right. Just a question, when the strike of 1994 happened MLB encouraged all the clubs to “play nice” to the fans by letting (making) the players get close to fans for autographs, pictures & whatever. Do you see MLB “encouraging” players to do this again regarding the steroid situation? Thanks & Happy Holidays to You & everyone else out there in RSN. Bob

  76. bjonesnboston permalink
    December 19, 2007 8:49 am

    elvis,

    nice follow up comment. I think your recogintion of respect deserves applaud. not many others would do so.

  77. hulind permalink
    December 19, 2007 11:36 am

    Curt,

    Everything you do is genuine, real, and from the heart. We are lucky to have you as a lifetime member of RSN. Happy Holiday’s to you and yor family.

  78. mattsmithsox4life permalink
    December 19, 2007 12:02 pm

    Curt,

    I will proudly wear Red EVERY Friday until the troops come home. I have three very close friends of mine who are currently overseas. I pray for them each and every day that they will return home safely to their anxiously awaiting families. I was very moved by your putting this on your site. Thank you for taking the time to recognize things like this.

    We are all very busy this time of year with family and friends and to take a moment to look back and realize just how much the troops have done for us over the years means a lot!

    Have a safe and happy holiday, and see you in the Spring.

    Regards,

    Matt Smith

  79. yakdude01 permalink
    December 19, 2007 12:16 pm

    Hey Curt,

    Great entry today!

    Another thing I can do to help those serving recognize that I support them. I will make it a part of my routine each Friday.

    And like other people here, seeing that video just makes you want to cry, stand up and salute the brave men and women who serve in the military worldwide. Here is hoping that all of them come home soon, safe, to be with their friends and family!

    See you around the ballparks in 2008! I’m hoping to take in a few Red Sox games in a few places. Seattle, Houston, Arlington, TX, etc.

    Hope you have a great holiday with your family.

    Kevin

  80. navywife25 permalink
    December 19, 2007 12:22 pm

    Curt,

    As a wife a man in the military I want to say thank you for being so insightful when it comes to the struggles that military men and women.

    Red Fridays are something that every Navy Wife that i know lives by! In fact I’d say about 1/2 of all the Wives that their husbands are on the ship with mine… we wear Red Sox Jerseys that are customized with our Husbands names on the back! (I might have had a LITTLE something to do with that… Hmmmm lol)

    The video that you posted… brought me to tears immediately because on more than one occasion I have picked my husband up at the airport when he was in uniform and as soon as he walked off the plane there were many people cheering, clapping, and thanking him for being in the military and suprisingly thanking me for being his number one supporter.

    I think some of the people that commented in this blog saying that Red Fridays are just a scam should be ashamed of themselves. Red Fridays have been a staple of any military wife’s wardrobe since my husband was in the military.

    On behalf of my husband, his shipmates, myself and all of the other military wives out there knowing that their husband is fighting for every one elses freedom… we thank you!!!!!!!

    It’s about time someone recognize these guys for what they are. Heroes!!

    Kristina Twitchell…

    PROUD NAVY WIFE!!!!

  81. yanksrdaclassofbball permalink
    December 19, 2007 12:25 pm

    Curt,

    the video was very cool. I was at a Padres game in 02 and there were a whole section of Marines there. After the game when the Marines were filing out of the stadium towards the parking lot a very similar scene unfolded as everyone kinda parted ways for them and applauded wildly. Brought tears to my eyes and made me respect even more what these men and women do. Regardless of whether someone agrees with the war or not, frustration should not be taken out on the soldiers, they are merely doing their jobs as instructed. Think of how dangerous it is for them every second of their day, plus being away from their loved ones. I am a Law Enforcement officer and I understand there’s danger when going to work, but I cant even compare that to these amazing individuals. While I don’t agree with you too often when it comes to baseball, I appreciate your message here. Besides, as fanatical as I am about my Yankees, it makes a person realize that there are many things way more important than the Red Sox and Yankees.

  82. greydog24 permalink
    December 19, 2007 1:38 pm

    Excellent job, as usual Curt.

    It’s too bad that some posters (e.g. – hawk40, das funk) totally missed the point that you tried to make here. Whether or not ‘John Q. Public’ supports the war or not is IRRELEVANT. So is someone trying to educate you, Curt Schilling, as to the validity of an e-mail story by checking with snopes.com… please. Yes, I’m from a military family. BTW – if the draft is reinstituted, whether or not I want to have my family members drafted at that point is irrelevant. Perhaps some of us still feel one has an obligation to serve…and just might want to do so…?

    The point here is that Curt proposes an idea – it being simply that American citizens might WANT to show their own support of our servicemen and women by wearing a red shirt on Friday. Period. A simple idea that does no one any harm, doesn’t ‘offend’, and seems like it would be well received by the majority.

    One of the beautiful things with the U.S. is that we are free to choose to do this…or not. I respect the fact that Curt has chosen to present this idea as a positive thing that we can all do. Where the idea comes from doesn’t matter as much as the thought of passing it along does…

  83. beantownkid59 permalink
    December 19, 2007 1:58 pm

    Curt, the only way to support the troops is to bring them home, so we can get our military ready for any fallout from the world’s hatred towards America. It’s fine you support McCain, but anyone who would be persuaded to vote for the leader of our country based on who their favorite ballplayer endorses, shouldn’t be eligible to vote in the first place. It was the rednecks in the bible belt who voted your boy George in, so maybe you should run your ads down south, You see up here in MA, people are intelligent enough to realize Military is not at the forefront of this election… our horrible image in the world, and failing economy are. Support the troops, and bring them home. Your in pretty good shape anyways for your age, why didn’t you grab a pen and sign up for this “war” back in 01?

    Win another pennant Curt. Do it for Jesus!!!!!!!

  84. bostonbassplayer38 permalink
    December 19, 2007 2:16 pm

    hey thats just amazing i think that most people dont give enough respect to all the troops that give their lives each day.

    so we wear red shirts on fridays ur the man

    thanks curt

  85. soxfan33 permalink
    December 19, 2007 2:32 pm

    © Mike Lynaugh

    Arlington at Christmas

    Readers may be interested to know that these wreaths — some 5,000 — are donated by the Worcester Wreath Co. of Harrington, Maine. The owner, Merrill Worcester, not only provides the wreaths, but covers the trucking expense as well. He’s done this since 1992. A wonderful guy. Also, most years, groups of Maine school kids combine an educational trip to DC with this event to help out. Making this even more remarkable is the fact that Harrington is in one the poorest parts of the state.

  86. airforcesoftballplayer permalink
    December 19, 2007 6:34 pm

    Curt,

    My name is Technical Sergeant Gagnon and I have been in the Air Force for over 15 years now. I have read all the responses to Red Shirt Fridays and most of them made me feel good and then there were the ones that people just dont get it!!! I wish these people could just spend a week in Iraq, Afganistan, etc…with us. I am proud to serve my country and every four years I have a choice to stay in or get out of the Military. It is an honor to do what we do and I am thrilled to hear that you suggested this idea to wear Red on Fridays. I will tell you that even though I have to wear camo on Fridays I will start to wear a Red shirt (Red Sox of course) under my black t-shirt. I will definately pass this on to my fellow Airmen in the US Air Force and trust me it will spread like wild fire.

    Support!!

    This is a strong word for us!! When we are deployed downrange or at home station it is the best thing in the world to hear that professional atheletes like yourself try to make a difference and support us in any way you can. I always think back to when Pat Tillman died…I have the upmost respect for that man God rest his soul. He dropped everything he had accomplished as a successful football player and followed his heart. He believed that it was his duty as an American to serve his country.

    Recently we had an Airman that was stationed with me at RAF Lakenheath, England die from an IED while deployed in Iraq. We held a memorial service here at RAF Lakenheath soon after this tragedy. I attended his service and so did 90% of the base. This hit home since a lot of people here either knew him personally or worked each and every day with him. He was in his early 20’s. He just started his life and it ended ever to soon. Being that I am 33 years old I have grown to respect a lot of people, but the most respect I have are the Military members that are willing to sacrifice their lives each and every day serving in the Armed Forces.

    One last thing…I have to really post this because it really gets to me when I am reminded of it. Early this past year the NFL decided to have a regular season game in London. It was decided that Miami and New York were going to be the teams. A lot of us dont get a chance to go to games because we are either deployed or stationed overseas. I decided to try to contact the NFL to see if they might be able to send a few of us to the game. I was not trying to get a free ride, I was just seeing if the NFL would like to support some of the troops. I send numerous e-mails and I did not hear a response except from a member of the NFL Players association. This person stated that she would forward this request on to the league office and if I did not hear anything in a couple of months to contact the league office after the Pro Bowl and see where we stood. I did not hear anything for a few months. I called the league office and I basically got nowhere. If I would have just received an e-mail or a call stating that it would not be possible I would have just said that at least I tried. I did not hear anything!! This really gets to me becasue when I watch NFL games on TV we always hear that the NFL supports us and what we do. If so why couldn’t they take the time to respond to a request whether they could support us or not. Like you stated in this post “You could not do what you do, if we did not do what we do”. This is the same for the NFL also. Once again I am not looking for sympathy and I was not looking for a free ride to a game. It just urked me that I did not receive any response after numerous tries contacting the league office.

    Curt once again…As a die hard fan of all of Boston’s professional teams I salute you and what you try to do for the Men and Women of the United States Armed Forces. Keep pressing and I guarantee I speak for all of us!!!

    TSgt Gagnon

    United States Air Force

    RAF Lakenheath, UK

  87. jetster1973 permalink
    December 19, 2007 7:55 pm

    Curt

    I am an Air Force Member originally from MA, NH stationed in Texas, I would like to personally thank you from the bottom of my heart for your sincere gratitude to my other comrads in all Military Services. I obviously from New England, am a Die Hard Fan of all my Boston Teams and a really big fan of you and The Boston Red Sox. It is great to have an athlete that I really think highly of bring everybody together during this holiday season. I would like to wish You, Shonda and the kids a joyous Holiday Season.

    Best Wishes,

    SSgt John T. Jett

    Stationed at Randolph AFB, Texas.

  88. jas62 permalink
    December 19, 2007 9:24 pm

    Red has always been my favorite color. I hate this war but could hardly finish reading this through the tears. I’m reminded of my Dad telling me about my Godfather in WWII. He was on an air craft carrier and they would launch flag drapped coffins into the ocean. I’m glad this soldier made it home.

    1.) The Worcester Wreath Company doesn’t get nearly the recognition it should. I’ve seen this on the news for the past 2 Holiday seasons and it makes me proud to be a native New Englander.

    2.) Message to Elvis. The only thing that reads loud and clear on your pitiful blog is 2 words: NO COMMENTS.

  89. mhcranberry permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:02 pm

    There are those of us who won’t wear red on Fridays.

    I support the troops. I love America. Deeply.

    But I think there are just better ways to support the troops than wearing a shirt. Much better ways.

    By volunteering and helping take care of their communities while they’re away.

    By helping teach their children.

    By helping their aging parents.

    By keeping their jobs for them, and supporting them during transitions in and out of civilian life.

    Do you see where I’m going with this?

    God bless all of you for the sentiments here–I agree with them–but the truth is, the real support that is needed might take a little more than that.

    Symbols like red shirts are nice, but to me, we should do something much more.

    Do don’t make any assumptions about people who don’t wear red on Fridays. We could be contributing every day, but don’t advertise.

    And one side note: I’m unclear on the silent majority bit too. I haven’t heard anything but intense public criticism for people who don’t support the troops, or even people just accused of not supporting the troops because they don’t support the war. I know, because I’m one of them. This is a majority that is very far from silent, I think.

    And a word–it hurt very deeply to have my support for the the troops challenged because I didn’t believe in the war. That kind of accusation shouldn’t be thrown around lightly.

    Thanks.

  90. tigerfanforever permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:07 pm

    Thanks for the heads up…I will do my part to pass this information on in Detroit.

  91. warbler44 permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:11 pm

    red shirts? enlist tough guys ……..fight the wars you pretend to support….I think the clapping is because they don’t have to go themselves……and yes, i went.

  92. oneopinion permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:25 pm

    That video was moving, gave me one of those chills or however you describe it on the back of the head. Anyone else get those? Thanks for sharing.

    p.s. In this day and age, regardless of one’s stance on the war in Iraq, it does seem as though everyone supports the troops – and that is a good thing. As we all know, that wasn’t always the case.

  93. oneopinion permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:28 pm

    And oh yeah, almost forgot: The last soldier that turned around at the end of the video – looked like Tito. He must have turned around to check on you, Curt!

  94. ps2dad permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:33 pm

    Curt,

    while I am opposed to war, I am also aware of the impossible situation our country has been led into. The troops need and deserve much more support than they are getting presently. If such a war could have been avoided, it should have been. But the fact is, we are there, and our troops are not being properly outfitted, they have little or no aid from our “allies”, and even the Iraqis are not dooing much to help themselves. As a veteran, I fully support Red Shirt Friday, and my country. God bless you, Curt. And God bless the United States of America.

  95. adk26 permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:38 pm

    Curt,

    I hung out with you a couple of time in Baltimore many years ago when you called everyone “Meat”.

    I really admire what you have done in your career, but more importantly, how you conduct yourself in your life.

    I am touched by the piece and, even though my colors are blue and white, I will wear red Friday’s and encourage those around me to do the same.

  96. mykatieq permalink
    December 19, 2007 10:50 pm

    Dear youtalkfunny,

    My sentiments exactly! When are we going to make some “real” sacrifices for our troops since we succumbed to scare tactics and allowed ourselves to get caught up in this unnecessary war? What happened to real Americans and real sacrifices like those of the WWII times?

  97. northlandsoxfan permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:36 am

    Hello Curt.

    I am a transplant from western mass. here in the Northland of Minnesota (Gods Country!). I come across emails such as these often since my younger brother is serving in Iraq right now. This is his second tour there as well as a tour in bosnia. I had personal reservations as to the wisdom of going to war there, but, since we are in it now, we must support our troops. I do not believe you can support them without giving support to the men who lead them. We can not support our troops when we do not tell our congessmen to give them all that they need! We are in it now. If we support them, then we support victory. We support their job at hand, their mission. We should give them the very best. I am not so young as to not know about the sacrifices my parents and grandparents made during ww2. That was what supporting your troops is really all about. If we are going to support out troops, lets put some substance behind our heartwarming talk. A double minded man is unstable in all his ways. So is a country as a whole. We put our fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, brothers and sisters at greater risk when we flounder in our convictions to settle for nothing less than victory. I don’t mean to sound negative. May God bless our troops, be merciful to our enemies, and continue to be gracious to our country.

  98. leakypen permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:47 am

    As the father of two young men in the military(I was a peacenik during Vietnam era) I cannot say how proud I am of their service and their brethren. I, too, shall wear red on all Fridays as long as the Good Lord allows me to breathe and as long as we, as a nation have service personnel in harm’s way.

    Thank you Curt, for being the man you are and openly stating how all of us can be supportive without being political about it!

    Peace and Love to you all!

  99. polaris26 permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:53 am

    ah not to rain on this great idea but here in canada we have had red friday for a few years. it’s still a great gesture. and oh yeah we love being your neighbour in fact darn proud.

  100. 1redsox permalink
    December 20, 2007 6:59 am

    Curt –

    Although myself and my family are Sox fanatics – to say the least – your words and “you being you” impress me to no end (and that feeling extends to your family). The most important thing that many of the population fail to believe is that we are ALL human beings. I do not care if you are the president of the US or a homeless person on the street. I care and respect each and every one of you. It is not who you are, the money the you make (or do not make) – – – it is what you do with your life to make a difference in this world. I live by the with my family every day.

    You make a difference. You would be my friend! I appreciate you – O.K. – for being a Red Sox – that should be mentioned!!!! – BUT, MOST IMPORTANTLY – FOR MAKING A DIFFERENCE.

    Happy Holidays to you and your family. Happy New Year 2008!

    AND GO SOX!

    Holly

  101. jae1217 permalink
    December 20, 2007 7:56 am

    Curt, it is an honor to know that someone cares so much about his troops and other things going on around the world. you are truly a person who has a heart of gold and proudly displays what he stands for. I was in tears reading your posting here, and I am proud to say I am a red sox fan and a curt Schilling fan for life. Good luck next year, ill be watching….

    O yea, by the way, my red sweatshirt is already out. with a # 3 on the back!

  102. jae1217 permalink
    December 20, 2007 7:57 am

    Sorry, # 38 on back….LOL

  103. eng2lt permalink
    December 20, 2007 8:16 am

    Glad you worked things out and are staying with the Sox…I think

    you and your wife are a class act…and showing your support for the troops is just another example. I served 6 years with the R.I.

    Air Guard as a firefighter, my Dad was a combat aircrewman in a

    Navy dive bomber in W.W.II, and my Grandfather was in the Marines and fought in 3 major battles in France in W.W.I.. God Bless our troops for all they do for our country and our way of life!

  104. ryatc permalink
    December 20, 2007 8:17 am

    Hi Curt,

    That YouTube video of the troops walking through the airport is great.

    I actually experienced the same EXACT thing at an airport. While waiting for my father outside the restroom I heard people start applauding and turned to see 3 soldiers in their BDUs walking up the hallway. People on both sides of the airport stopped what they were doing and applauded as they walked by. It was a moving experience that I will never forget and that continues to make me proud to be an American. Oh, and by the way, we had just arrived at the Ft. Myers airport to catch a couple spring training games in March of 2006!

    I’ll have my red on…

  105. nhchris permalink
    December 20, 2007 9:15 am

    As someone who wore a white arm band for 444 days during the Iran Hostage Crises, I say that wearing a red shirt on fridays is a great idea. Supporting the troops in war and peace should be a national priority, but special recognition during war seems appropriate. I thank God that our soldiers are over there so we can live in safety over here and pray for their safe return.

  106. quapa permalink
    December 20, 2007 9:18 am

    Curt: It is refreshing to see a major leaguer take a stand. It is my opinion that any player who has been found to having used steroids to further his career should be banned from the sport and his name and record accomplishments should be stricken from the record books. Such (steroid) cheating is a slap in the face to all those athletes who play by the rules with their God given abilities.

  107. 16maydaymalone permalink
    December 20, 2007 10:14 am

    Very well said! It’s also refreshing to hear that those, even though they may not support the war, are getting behind the troops. Would appreciate it if you wouldn’t make me cry again at work though, little embarrassing! Thanks for your comments.

  108. mvplooster permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:00 am

    Curt,

    I am a life life long Dodger’s fan but enjoy reading your opinions on baseball and life. I too enjoy the video and and who cares if it is a hoax, it gets the message across. I have been serving our country for 15 years and have deployed to Iraq with with no regrets. I am not a supporter of any war but believe that the safety our families and our country is more important. I have four chilldren and one beautiful granddaughter. I would rather bring the fight to the enemy than have them bring to our homes. I get paid to to do this and have no complaints. I want my family safe and sound and if that means that I must go war SO BE IT.

    Thanks for your support and good luck next season.

  109. dustbunny44 permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:11 am

    Curt,

    Our great country is, as I think you say, the result of all the great people in it and the courage and sacrifice and hard work each of us (well, most of us and thankfully enough of us) do day-to-day to make it and keep it that way. Many of us serve selflessly, and some pay the ultimate price. They deserve all the honor and benefits we can give them. Thank you for highlighting that and continuing to honor those who deserve it and more.

    Given all that, in no way should we let those assholes off the hook who have lied to us and to congress and who put us into a position where those who serve are being killed for misrepresented reasons. Our citizenship and our duty to Seargent Steeley’s charge and all the others like him deserve no less than our full commitment to truth, honor, freedom, true democracy, and equal rights for everyone on the planet. We are better than this mess in Iraq, we are better than detainment without charge, better than torture, better than fabricated intelligence, better than letting OBL off the hook for years,better than quid pro quo. Goddamn it, this is America.

  110. dmfordj permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:25 am

    Curt,

    Yes, you are a sucker. And so am I. Touching ad.

  111. redsoxfan4eva permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:41 am

    Curt,

    As always, a very meaningful message for us from you. I will be wearing my red on Fridays from here on in, and will pass the message along to others as well. Thank you for reminding us just how fortunate we are to live in this country where freedom is shared by all, and is protected by our heroes in the military. We owe them so much…and, wearing red on Fridays is the least we can do to show our support and gratitude for the sacrifices they make on a daily basis here and abroad.

    Merry Christmas to you, Shonda and family!!! Looking forward to spring training and another great year for the Sox!!

    Jana Schofield

  112. soxnation64 permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:15 pm

    Curt –

    I am an American Soldier who has served two tours in Iraq, 1 in Afghanistan and 1 in Bosnia since 2000. Your red shirt message is one that must be spread nation wide. I admire your thoughts of the soldiers, sailors and marines who shed blood, sweat and tears daily with little or no recognition. Thank you for taking time to not only to recognize us soldiers, but also to spread the support and gratitude these great heroes deserve.

    I am a devoted Red Sox fan and have been for 43 years (since birth). You bring to this team the charisma, spirit and devotion of Red Sox past. You truly are an inspiration to all true Sox fans!!

  113. flash17 permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:20 pm

    Curt,

    Thanks for the post, I have never heard of “Red Friday”. My dad was in the Air Force during the Bay of Pigs and Cuban Missle Crisis, I have friends in Iraq and constantly pray for their safe trip back home. Congrats on the World Series, I have been a die hard Rangers fan my whole life, suffering with a bad baseball team year after year after year. Rather have the Red Sox win than the Yankees. Good luck next season.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and your family.

    Hope see you in Texas this season either in Arlington or Houston

    Charles Gordon

  114. redsoxphreek permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:54 pm

    I just want to add one thing – please do MORE than just wear a red shirt or put a magnet ribbon on your car. When you see a soldier, airman, seaman or marine – make it so you have an opportunity to walk up, stick your hand out and thank them for doing what they do. You would be surprised to know when you do this – they bring that story back to their barracks or post and they share it with their comrades. Imagine that soon after you do this, they tell that story again and again while they sit in Iraq or Afganistan. It reminds them forever they ALL are important.

  115. svensheraton permalink
    December 20, 2007 12:58 pm

    i admire you so greatly for reaching out as a MLB player

    never afraid to share your opinions or speak directly to fans!!!!

    my brother got squeezed in Iraq just a few months back, roadside IED.

    G-dbless

  116. jmoody4 permalink
    December 20, 2007 2:35 pm

    Curt,

    I have been reading for a short time now and thought it was time for me to set up my account and post a response.

    I played college baseball growing up in New England and joined the Navy after my freshman year ended in 1999. I was a member of the All Navy baseball team and was lucky to play all over Southern California while serving my country. I did two deployments to the middle east aboard two seperate Spruance class destroyers and to have support like this at home really is up lifting and can really make your day.

    Thanks for everything you do and the hard work you put in.

    I hope you and your family enjoy this Christmas and the New Year.

    Jesse Moody

    Chicago, Il

  117. moosemanw permalink
    December 20, 2007 2:41 pm

    Curt,

    You’re a great player and ambassador of baseball! Though not a Red Sox fan I have enjoyed watching you play since your days with the Phillies.

    God Bless!

  118. ronymello permalink
    December 20, 2007 2:48 pm

    As long there is Baseball played and watched. The name and image of Curt Shilling will always be a RED SOX icon.

    Curt you are not only a true Sports Hero…but you are a genuine

    AMERICAN PATRIOT!!!!

    GOD BLESS YOU AND MAY GOD GRANT YOU MANY MORE YEARS OF PITCHING LIKE THE PRO YOU ARE.

  119. myethanoah permalink
    December 20, 2007 3:21 pm

    I wasn’t aware of this, but I am now, and will wear red on fridays. I don’t believe in the reasons we are at war, but I do believe in our troops, and all that they are doing over there, to give us lives here at home.

  120. jbeste permalink
    December 20, 2007 3:31 pm

    Thanks for passing this info along Curt. I know things like this are important to our troops.

  121. rsox38 permalink
    December 20, 2007 5:05 pm

    Curt,

    Thanks so much for sharing this. I too will be wearing mine.

    Rsox38

    P.S. Please go check out my blog…

  122. cardsox04 permalink
    December 20, 2007 6:05 pm

    This is another great idea that somebody sent me. I am traveling over the holidays and I hope I get a chance to use it.

    http://www.gratitudecampaign.org/fullmovie.php

  123. redsox38 permalink
    December 20, 2007 6:22 pm

    Curt,

    Thank you for putting that video up it was so inspiring. I think the Red Shirt thing is an amazing thing I will be wearing mine.

  124. jimboelliott permalink
    December 20, 2007 7:46 pm

    jimboelliott

    When i first read your comments i got real upset! I mean what kind of christian would initiate that kind of trash talk?? But if you cant lead by example, then maybe baseball is done!!! A sport I love full of so called christians, pointing fingers,, wrong !!! We are all children of god! You should pick up your brother, not knock him down!!! Nothing nice to say??? Then try to say nothing at all! I forgive you as a brother of christ, and respect your play! Please in the future try to be the bigger person!! take care and may god bless you and your family on this christmas holiday!! jimbo elliott

  125. johnnyredsox permalink
    December 20, 2007 9:38 pm

    GOD BLESS AMERICA !!!!!!!

  126. ampinoy13 permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:07 pm

    Curt:

    I saw the video in, I believe, the Super Bowl between Indy and Chicago. It touched me deeply.

    I wore the uniform (Air Force) for 21 years and my son has worn the same uniform for the last 13. He has been to Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and twice to Iraq. However you and I feel our leaders were right or wrong in entering that sovereign nation, we need to make sure the spirit of that Bud commercial is passed on to the men and women in harm’s way.

    If you have neighbors or friends with family members in uniform, especially Iraq and Afghanistan, let them know you support them 100%.

    Thank you for posting the video on your blog.

  127. theillien permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:15 pm

    The one problem I have with this is that it implies that those of us that wish the war to end *don’t* support our troops. On the contrary, I can’t think of a better way to support them than to ask that they be brought home so no more die fighting a “war” that will never end in it’s current approach.

  128. dwchick permalink
    December 20, 2007 11:46 pm

    Curt, What a difference a decade makes. On my tenth birthday (11/7/67), I was watching Cronkite on the evening news delivering the latest numbers of American casualties from Viet Nam while you were probably busy being born. That doesn’t make me smarter than you, just older. But, I remember how the few people who spat on our troops from Nam, were not representative of how most people felt. We hated the war, NOT the troops. In 1977, I worked in a Vets program at UMASS to try to help them get admitted into university. The stories they told in group were nothing less than horrible. And the reality of their journeys were revisited in nightmares. Not one thing they said made me think that war was just, but our troops were pawns in the giant chess game we like to call life, yet they were not as bitter as I thought they should be. The troops and their families paid the highest price for that debacle and I do believe vets benefits were way better back then than they are now. So, I shall wear red on Fridays, but I don’t know that it will be taken as a salute to the troops and not support for the war in Iraq. There really IS a difference!

    Anyone who puts their life on the line for our country deserves more from us all including the government, regardless of whether the commander in cheif’s orders were justified or not.

  129. dcsoxfan1 permalink
    December 21, 2007 8:02 am

    Um, you guys realize that Curt was not the guy on the plane, right?!

    The problem people are having is that there is a difference between supporting the troops on one hand and supporting the war and the administration on the other. One could do both, or one could do only the first. Frankly, were I over there, the support I’d want would be something that would result in me being brought home safely and soon. I support the troops 100%, but I think this war has been a criminal act by a corrupt (and stupid) administration.

    Go Sox!

  130. December 21, 2007 8:17 am

    2.) Message to Elvis. The only thing that reads loud and clear on your pitiful blog is 2 words: NO COMMENTS.

    It’s worse than that, jas62– there aren’t any posts, either.

    I’ve met a person who defends Castro, I’ve met people who think that the US is a war-mongering imperial power, etc. But I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t respect the people who volunteer to serve in the military. In fact, the meannest stuff I hear about people in the military comes from people in the other branches. Surely the far-left troop-haters exist, but they have significantly less political power than the KKK.

    So the “show that you’re a part of the silent majority by supporting the troops” line just doesn’t sound right. It sounds like you have some different agenda hiding behind the stated goal of supporting the troops, because 99 percent of people do support the troops. There is room for good-faith disagreement as to which policies best support the troops.

  131. lynnbilodeau permalink
    December 21, 2007 10:34 am

    When my son came home from Iraq in September of 2004, he was the only soldier coming off the plane in OKC. When he was reunited with his family, it was quite the emotional scene. There were no violins playing, and no multiple cameras set up to capture the crowd. However, there were MANY “well wishers” there that day. Many folks walked up to my son and thanked him for his service to our country. I don’t care if this particular “scene” was staged. It makes no difference. It is a true reflection of something that happens.

    Regardless of your political persuasion, regardless of whether you think overthrowing Saddam was in the best interest of this country and all free countries, our young men and women are serving their country, and we should show them the appreciation they deserve.

    BTW, as a side note, when I asked him what he wanted for a coming home present, he said “Dad, I want to go see a game at Fenway”. We made several games in the last week of the season.

    Thanks for sharing the video.

    Lynn Bilodeau

  132. rice14 permalink
    December 21, 2007 4:51 pm

    That was a very touching video, and only wish all americans were compelled to support our troops, i dont care if you support war or not you should support the troops.

  133. o4goshsakes permalink
    December 21, 2007 7:15 pm

    I wish it were better than this. Red shirts, ribbon magnets, etc. It is hardly enough to make any difference other than a personal feel good gesture of faith. I’ve been in a similar position as the one Curt tells about. While my family and I were sitting in the regular old coach section on a recent trip back to “The States” a soldier in BDUs was sitting near us while crossing the country to return home(?) after a stint in the godforsaken Middle East somewhere. The kid (as the flight crew referred to him) didn’t utter a sound during the whole flight. He hardly moved a muscle from Dallas to San Francisco. After his name was announced, a request was made to allow him to deplane before the rest of us by the head flight attendant. We hit the gate, he popped up and charged down the aisle not making eye contact with anyone along the way while the rest of us clapped and cheered. It was difficult to know what was going through his mind. I won’t presume to suggest that anyone there knew what he was thinking, except that he seemed very eager to deplane.

    I wore the uniform too – 5 years (the requisite initial 4 with an extension and get the hell out.) Before I entered the service I didn’t think there were others like myself who were cynical of traditional military culture while admiring and respecting of the sacrifice a good many (but by no means all) of our military members make during their service to country, but, yeah, there are lots of people just like myself (and more so) in the military who serve the country at the whim of our elected leaders in hopes that they don’t play recklessly with our valuable lives and those of our families as the current band of rogue warriors have done with respect to Iraq for the past 6+ years. Yes, dwchick, our troops are the quinessential “pawns”. (While growing up war games and playing combat and toy soldiers wasn’t something that peaked my interest, but I could never understand why, in the rules of war, it wasn’t allowed [or at the very least – it wasn’t very good manners] to eliminate the leaders rather than contributing to the greater bloodbath by having the pawn soldiers kill each other over and over and over again.) My experience at home and overseas serving my country in the Air Force doesn’t give me an excuse to know any more about the Iraq War or the mentality of the troops fighting the fight there.

    I also see in the comments a crack at our “allies”. Our allies in Europe who didn’t join us in Iraq on an illegal invasion were right not to throw their support there after criticizing the rush to war by our government. They would be fools, most certainly hypocrites, and absolutely complicit in international lawlessness by doing so. But we don’t hear nearly enough of the sacrifice they’ve made in Afghanistan in aide and troops helping to fight the forces that aided and abetted bin Laden’s band of cretinous terrorists, as well as al Qaeda itself – the people that actually attacked us, the Britons on the London buses and Underground, the Spanish on their commuter trains and with continued attacks in Northern and Eastern Africa, Southeastern Asia and the Middle East.

    I’ve also worked, part-time, for our State Department at one of our embassies. The experience gave me a tremendous appreciation for the hard work, sacrifice and, yes, trained intelligence of our diplomatic corps and civilians working for our Department of Defense and other government agencies. These people are seldom recognized anywhere yet their work is incredibly vital to our troops as well as to all that we are as a nation and global partner in the world.

    Of the Marines who guarded our embassy there were those who were anxious to be sent to Iraq, control some heavy piece of machinery and patrol shortly after the invasion took place, those who discounted the adventures of Anthony Swofford, the acclaimed author of “Jarhead”, as “some of those things would never happen in real life. What? Where he holds a gun to the guy’s head?” (shortly after that the photos of Abu Ghraib were released, as well as many other stories of misconduct that received very little attention) and one of the youngest there who once came to me in the Community Liaison Office to suggest a way in which he could contribute back to the local community, had some relatively harsh comments for the manner in which our government was being run, yet still fit in with the rest of his fellow Marines in social settings.

    I feel a good bit as mhcranberry (in comment #89) does and to a slightly lesser degree as dasfunk (comment #29) does, as well as a few others here and there. My cynicism and contempt for our president and vice president as well as our complicit Congress knows no bounds when I consider our involvement in Iraq. The White House rhetoric is criminal in its pass-the-buck style of management and their shrug of irresponsibility. It’s Friday here on the opposite side of world. (I am the spouse of one of those US Government civilian-types I mentioned earlier.) I’m wearing my red shorts as I sit in front of my computer. I’ll grab the first clothes I see when I get dressed to head out to buy food for a Christmas Eve meal we’ll share with other Americans who are here in part as a hardship tour as well as in the safety and security of millions of acres of the surrounding desert, but not sacrificing nearly as much as those military, and civilians, in the Iraqi desert.

  134. teke270 permalink
    December 21, 2007 7:37 pm

    I am a proud American!! I support our troops though I can lend my support for the war in Iraq. My cousin proudly serves and takes great honor in defending our nation and in providing the very blanket of security and freedom under which we sleep.

    To you, Frank, as you serve nation, family and friends in Iraq – thank you for all you do.

    To the Troops, God bless and safe passage.

    Remember to wear Red to show your support for our boys!

  135. o4goshsakes permalink
    December 21, 2007 7:45 pm

    I must add. Although I don’t agree with Curt on his outspoken politics and I have to admit I don’t follow all that Curt utters, shouts, or curses, we all have been touched by adversity in one way or another, some more than others. My family, on my mother’s side, has lost three people that I know of in my lifetime to ALS and I admire Curt for his blatant support of the ALS Society in its search for a cure and help to those afflicted by this incredibly terrible and torturous disease.

    Thank you, Curt.

  136. dsmith2406 permalink
    December 21, 2007 9:44 pm

    I am unable to cliam this as my work, but it does fit and represent the idea sent forth.

    As September 11 approaches, I received a note from a friend that I thought was worth reading.

    Take the time

    I sat in my seat of the Boeing 767 waiting for everyone to hurry and stow their carry-ons and grab a seat so we could start what I was sure to be a long, uneventful flight home.

    With the huge capacity and slow moving people taking their time to stuff luggage far too big for the overhead and never paying much attention to holding up the growing line behind them, I simply shook my head knowing that this flight was not starting out very well. I was anxious to get home to see my loved ones so I was focused on “my” issues and just felt like standing up and yelling for some of these clowns to get their act together. I knew I couldn’t say a word so I just thumbed thru the “Sky Mall” magazine from the seat pocket in front of me.

    You know it’s really getting rough when you resort to the over priced, useless sky mall crap to break the monotony. With everyone finally seated, we just sat there with the cabin door open and no one in any hurry to get us going although we were well past the scheduled take off time. No wonder the airline industry is in trouble I told myself. Just then, the attendant came on the intercom to inform us all that we were being delayed.

    The entire plane let out a collective groan. She resumed speaking to say “We are holding the aircraft for some very special people who are on their way to the plane and the delay shouldn’t be more than 5 minutes.

    The word came after waiting six times as long as we were promised that “I” was finally going to be on my way home. Why the hoopla over “these” folks? I was expecting some celebrity or sport figure to be the reason for the hold up………Just get their butts in a seat and let’s hit the gas I thought.

    The attendant came back on the speaker to announce in a loud and excited voice that we were being joined by several U. S. Marines returning home from Iraq!!! Just as they walked on board, the entire plane erupted into applause. The men were a bit taken by surprise by the 340 people cheering for them as they searched for their seats. They were having their hand shook and touched by almost everyone who was within an arm’s distance of them as they passed down the aisle. One elderly woman kissed the hand of one of the Marines as he passed by her. The applause, whistles and cheering didn’t stop for a long time.

    When we were finally airborne, “I” was not the only civilian checking his conscience as to the delays in “me” getting home, finding my easy chair, a cold beverage and the remote in my hand. For all these men had done for all of us and I had been complaining silently about “me” and “my” issues. I took for granted the everyday freedoms I enjoy and the conveniences of the American way of life. I took for granted others have paid the price for my ability to moan and complain about a few minutes delay to “me.” These Heroes were going home to their loved ones.

    I attempted to get my selfish outlook back in order and minutes before we landed I suggested to the attendant that she announce over the speaker a request for everyone to remain in their seats until our hero’s were allowed to gather their things and be first off the plane. The cheers and applause continued until the last Marine stepped off and we all rose to go about our too often taken for granted everyday freedoms.

    I felt proud of them. I felt it an honor and a privilege to be among the first to welcome them home and say Thank You for a job well done. I vowed that I will never forget that flight nor the lesson learned. I cannot say it enough, THANK YOU to those Veterans and active service members and women who may read this and a prayer for those who cannot because they are no longer with us. GOD BLESS

    AMERICA! WELCOME HOME! AND THANKS FOR A JOB WELL DONE !!!!!

  137. ryanb07 permalink
    December 22, 2007 3:20 am

    Curt,

    I was in the military for a couple years, and I remember going through some hard times. And my father always said something to me that was so meaningful to me. He always asked me “What would Schilling do….” So I would sit there and think to myself. What would you do? and the past several years we’ve all watched you have some hard times on the mound, and have some really great ones. But no matter what happened you stayed focused and continued to write in your book, and pitch the best that you can. I would like to thank you for your hard work and dedication to Red Sox and your efforts for ASL. So with that in mind I would like to share this poem with you, and everyone else who reads these comments

    The Night Before Christmas

    T’was the night before Christmas,

    He lived all alone,

    In a one bedroom house,

    Made of plaster and stone.

    I had come down the chimney,

    With presents to give,

    And to see just who,

    In this home did live.

    I looked all about,

    A strange sight I did see,

    No tinsel, no presents,

    Not even a tree.

    No stocking by the mantle,

    Just boots filled with sand,

    On the wall hung pictures,

    Of far distant lands.

    With medals and badges,

    Awards of all kinds,

    A sober thought,

    Came through my mind.

    For this house was different,

    It was dark and dreary,

    I found the home of a soldier,

    Once I could see clearly.

    The soldier lay sleeping,

    Silent, alone,

    Curled up on the floor,

    In this one bedroom home.

    The face was so gentle,

    The room in such disorder,

    Not how I pictured,

    A U.S. soldier.

    Was this the hero,

    Of whom I’d just read?,

    Curled up on a poncho,

    The floor for a bed?

    I realized the families,

    That I saw this night,

    Owed their lives to these soldiers,

    Who were willing to fight.

    Soon round the world,

    The children would play,

    And grownups would celebrate,

    A bright Christmas Day.

    They all enjoyed freedom,

    Each month of the year,

    Because of the soldiers,

    Like the one lying here.

    I couldn’t help wonder,

    How many lay alone,

    On a cold Christmas Eve,

    In a land far from home.

    The very thought brought

    A tear to my eye,

    I dropped to my knees,

    And started to cry.

    The soldier awakened,

    And I heard a rough voice,

    ‘Santa, don’t cry.

    This life is my choice.

    I fight for freedom,

    I don’t ask for more,

    My life is my God,

    My country, my corps.’

    The soldier rolled over,

    And drifted to sleep,

    I couldn’t control it,

    I continued to weep.

    I kept watch for hours,

    So silent and still,

    And we both shivered,

    From the cold night’s chill.

    I didn’t want to leave,

    On that cold, dark night,

    This guardian of honor,

    So willing to fight.

    Then the soldier rolled over,

    With a voice, soft and pure,

    Whispered, ‘Carry on Santa,

    It’s Christmas Day, all is secure.’

    One look at my watch,

    And I knew he was right,

    ‘Merry Christmas my friend,

    And to all a good night.’

    Merry Christmas Everyone. When you bow your heads at christmas dinner this weekend. Please say a pray for our men and women who can not be here with their familys for these holidays.

  138. erin3133 permalink
    December 22, 2007 10:25 pm

    I just have to say this is such a great thing. The Boston Fire Department changed their dress code last summer to allow the firefighters to wear red work shirts instead of their normal blue ones on Fridays. They all even say “Supporting our Troops” on them. I know all of them, my Dad being one, are very proud of our troops and thankful. As am I. I will continue to wear red shirts on Fridays, as I have been doing for awhile now.

    Thank You for spreading the word,

    Erin

  139. disnygrl43 permalink
    December 23, 2007 5:02 am

    Dear Curt,

    I can tell you how emotional it is when you see a soldier. My nephew is home on leave for Christmas. My family went to the airport to greet him. He thought only his mom, dad, brother and 2 sisters were going to meet him. He had a huge sign welcoming him home as well as his cousin, aunt, uncle and friends. While he was huggin his dad people around us starting cheering him! What feeling that was. I had tears streaming down my face as I videoed the scene. I will never forget that! We as a counrty have our faults, but when it comes to our military we all fel the same. GOD BLESS, and may they all come home safe!

  140. navycorpman4 permalink
    December 23, 2007 10:42 am

    Mr. Shilling:

    Thank you for the support for our troops. A Merry Christmas to you and your family. The troops greatly appreciate the support from the public, especially when it is someone from the Red Sox!!!!

    This has been a long, hard struggle and many of us have been there since the beginning in 2001. It’s taken a tremendous toll on our families, but somehow, we’ve all kept going. Failure is not an option. The job is hard and many don’t understand the sacrifice, but in the end, it’s worth it if all of America sleeps well at night. We faithfully got the Red Sox scores, while we were at sea. Didn’t hear about anything else, but it kept our spirits up. Thanks again for all that you do!!!!

  141. nopepr permalink
    December 23, 2007 8:50 pm

    Curt,

    Great article. I’ll spread the word through the blogsphere. I did a hike in Sept called flags on the 48. http://www.flagsonthe48.org/ it’s a Sept 11th memorial hike that has gone on for some years and I was deeply moved by the people that did this hike.

    I’ll spread the word, blog opn my site http://weholdthesetruthsblog.com and will be wearing red on Friday from now on.

    David C.

  142. isles2279 permalink
    December 24, 2007 4:45 am

    Curt,

    I sincerely disagree with the manner with which you publicly support American soldiers deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Throughout your posts you refer to these men and women as courageous, heroes, and admonish great praise on those who have chosen to represent their country abroad. Since 2002, the current administration has ceaselessly attempted to justify American occupation of Iraq as a means of liberating the people who inhabit the Tigris and Euphrates River Valley. Unfortunately, throughout that period of time, they failed to produce any compelling evidence that would lead an intelligent, educated, and rational human being to assume we WERE justified in assuming control of Iraq. In addition, our actions against the Muslim community and occupation of that country have lead to serious human rights violations and the men and women who represent the citizens of the United States have done so in a manner that has resulted in a growing tide of discontent with this country’s direction. Although I do not bear any ill will toward members of the military, I do not support their actions abroad and hold the current administration and individual members of the armed forces responsible for their actions overseas. The lack of any evidence supporting our occupation of Iraq, combined with the abhorrent conditions throughout much of that country since we invaded, make it exceedingly difficult for an educated person to “support” the military or Republican agenda at this time. I would think that a person who is in a position to influence many people (like yourself) would set aside his biases and sense of nationalism to take the time to educate himself as to the foreign policy and actions of the military and current administration before he speaks out in support of our troops or form of government.

    I apologize if my comments seems disrespectful, but it is difficult to believe you have studied the events of the past several years if you support the military by praising their actions. I too support the American military, but choose to do so by speaking out against the direction our country has taken and by demanding the immediate return of all American soldiers to their bases here in the U.S. There have been several AP Polls taken anonymously by members of our armed forces and in each, the troops overwhelmingly vote to end the occupation and return home. How do you show support for them by praising their continued involvement in a country we have no business occupying?

  143. jas62 permalink
    December 24, 2007 3:54 pm

    Elvis, pardon my error. It was the word ‘satire’ that really threw me off in a thread of this nature. What is the website that appears behind your name?

  144. caseysoxfan permalink
    December 26, 2007 8:38 am

    Curt, I really appreciate your support for our soldiers. I have a brother leaving for Afghanistan on January 1st and a Brother In-law who just got back from Iraq.

    We need more public figures to remind our fellow U.S. citizens what’s going on with our neighbors and their families. The sacrifice is great and it’s all in the name of God and our Great Country.

    I also wanted you to know that when my brother had a chance to take a short leave from Nellis AFB in Las Vegas this past Fall, we were fortunate enough to catch your performance against the Rockies at Fenway. He still talks about it…I picked him up at the airport and went straight to the park. It was a perfect night and you had a big part in that.

    Thank You.

  145. djrbikes permalink
    December 27, 2007 6:59 am

    Curt

    Last Christmas eve I experienced exactly what happened in the video. I was in an airport in Minneapolis traveling from Pittsburgh to Salt Lake when a plane filled with soldiers returning home landed. As the young heros came off the plane everyone in the terminal area stopped what they were doing, stood and clapped. The soldiers all had wide smiles on their faces. Probably as a great athlete you have grown accustom to the applause, but it seemed very moving and rewarding to the soldiers. As one who was standing and cheering, I know it was moving to me. It also brought home the true spirit of the holiday.

  146. quapa permalink
    December 27, 2007 12:03 pm

    KOSSOX and other bleeding heart, know nothing liberals need a history lesson. It was not “President Bush” that started this war. Seems like I recall a bunch of ragheads flying airplanes into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, and a field in PA. I would think that President Bush is on our side and we need to support him. I am not crazy about the war either. I hate to see our servicemen and women dying in a war that cannot and will never be won. Those Arabs have been killing each other since Adam and Eve and will continue to do so until the end of time. They have no concept of what freedom is all about and they don’t want to know. I would dealy love to see our troops come home from every foreign country in the world. Let those countries take care of themselves, or not. I am a vet, having fought in Vfietnam for an “ungrateful” nation. I had to sneak back into the country because there were so many KOSSOX people(who neverf served) waiting in ambush, along with the liberal and biased media. If KOSSOX believes that our Commander-in-Chief is a criminal-in-Chief, then he needs to move to an Islamic country. Bye, bye, Kossox.

  147. pfdfiremonkey permalink
    December 28, 2007 1:59 pm

    Curt,

    In September, my wife and I traveled to Baltimore for the weekend series against the Orioles. After we landed and retreived our luggage. My wife packed! Do I need to say more. We headed for the hotel shuttle.

    Several sister-in laws, and brother in laws traveled with us as well. We grabbed the first shuttle and piled in. The shuttle stopped at the next pick up station and a guy approaches the passenger window of the van ans asks the driver, “do you have room for 14?” The driver says,”no but I can fit 7 right now and come back for the rest.” The guy at the window turns and he says, “that’s great” and turns and yells to the group “lets load the body bags and weapons!” My wife and sister in law jumped and screamed and were trying to get out of the van.

    It turns out they just returned from Iraq and were heading home. The girls were teary eyed while they loaded their gear. We all said thank you as they piled in. That is until the master sergeant jumped in the front seat. He turned and looked at us with our Red Sox hats and and says “F– great, the first thing from I see when I get back from Irag is a god damn red sox fan!” The master sergeant turned out to be a Yankees fan

    We met them out for dinner and cocktails later that night. Thanked them again for their service and dedication.

  148. jamakn14 permalink
    December 29, 2007 9:17 am

    I too thank our Troops every time I see them. Be at the mall, downtown, airports, etc…

    Imagine not being home, not snuggling with you kids, not running your dog, the long car rides through the valleylogging onto your fav. web site, sitting a reading the paper with hot coffee…

    all these things we do at the drop of a dime, they are longing to get home for…

    yet the longing, along iwth commitment and more heart thancan ever be measured, keeps them putting one foot in front of the other as they march on…

  149. ginte37 permalink
    December 29, 2007 3:53 pm

    Hey ISLES2279,

    I couldn’t agree more. It takes true courage to seek the truth on your own and speak it, instead of listening to people with a powerful voice. Unfortunately Curt is ignoring the facts by supporting the brutal violence perpetrated by America Political actions.

    Obviously, what the soldiers are doing is wonderful, they have given themselves to all of us so completely for what they think is the good of the world, and they are truly heroes. But, they are being taken advantage of by the powerful people who are making the money and they truly have no concern for these soldiers.

    Curt, I truly believe that you are a great guy, and I know you are honorable and you are very respectable in the way in which you live your life everyday. But if you are going to use your voice to communicate to millions of people about a subject of this importance, you are obliged be more informed.

    It is irresponsible and destructive to support wars that America is in simply because we are American. What we have done in Iraq is catastrophically illegal and not only is it horrible what has been done to the Iraqi people, but what has happened to the USA and the constitution should be of great concern to a true patriot like yourself. Simply supporting American policies no matter what has caused us to surrender our freedoms for more security, and by forfeiting our freedoms to the powerful to take advantage of these heroic soldiers can only result in a disadvantageous consequence to every person on earth.

    These are not so much opinions as they are fact. You have to open your eyes to what is going on here, the facts are overwhelming. We need to take a stand for peace. Our greatest persecutors are those who are profiting from this war. American citizens are not gaining anything from this war. Those in charge of this country are the only beneficiaries. People in the middle east are worse off and people here at home are worse off.

    The American Soldiers have been taken advantage of, so instead of sharing this propaganda about clapping for Army uniforms, use your voice to make things right.

    Ra-Ra… Go Sox.

  150. quapa permalink
    January 5, 2008 10:15 am

    I wonder how long MLB can continue given the exhorbitant salaries these days? I do not begrudge anyone making a living, but the contracts such as A-Rod’s is a little over the top. In the end it is the fan who suffers. Last year I took my son and grandson’s to a Cardinal’s game in St. Louis. We live four hours North of St. Louis. We went a day early so we spent two nights in a motel ($300.00); four tickets to the game ($160.00); parking fees at the stadium, $15.00; food outside the stadium, $300.00; snacks in the stadium$100.00 +. Incidentals, $100.00. In short, that one game cost me in the neighborhood of $975.00. And, the Cardinals lost. I would think a couple of million a year should suffice for an MLB ball player. At the rate it is going, baseball will have to be supported in its entirety by TV contracts. How much fun could that be… playing to an empty house?

  151. bleedredbleedproud permalink
    January 7, 2008 9:41 pm

    Curt I just want to say thank you for your support with the troops. I myself am one (USAF). And I had some ideas to ask you. Have you ever thought about doing an USO Tour with the Series Trophy? You’ll be susprised on how many Sox fans are in the middle east. I love how you are wanting to see Red on Friday’s as well. However, I would like to see the Sox come up with another alternate jersey. For instance a “Camo Jersey” with the Armed Forces Patch on the shoulder. I think it would be a great honor. The Harrisburg Senators (AA) team did that for my unit and it was great because they auctioned off the jerseys and the proceeds went to the American Disabled Veterans fund.

    The reading these comments about sitting on the plane at the airport. Well I was on the recieving end of that a month ago. It was the best feeling in the wolrd. I cant explain it. Seeing Girl Scout Troops giving care packages and cards reading “thank you” on it was just too much. The USO, VFW, and other organizations were there as well. Feeling the support woke me up in my young 7yrs of service and makes prouder today than it did when I first joined. Everyone has a voice of the opion on the War. But they shouldnt blame us Troops. Thank you Curt for being a hero of your own in the job that you take pride in.

  152. quapa permalink
    January 13, 2008 10:11 am

    I find it odd that people say that they support our troops but do not support the war? I don’t think you can do one without the other. I think we have the wrong terminology for this conflict… it isn’t a war, it is more of a conflict. If it were a war, it would have been over by now. The only way to win a war is with “total” commitment. It isn’t pretty, but the only way this action can be won is to declare war and get the job done and done right. The way it is going, the Muslim world will be camping on our door step in the not too distant future. America does not have the intestinal fortitude to get this thing over and done. We try so hard to please everyone and not step on any toes. Well, if we aren’t going to fight a war, then get our troops out of there and hope for the best. I fear it is only a matter of time until the terrorist start making their presence known in this country. Lord knows that there are enough of them here already.

    I still love baseball. I think God played short stop.

  153. mayday16 permalink
    January 13, 2008 9:12 pm

    Curt,

    Read the book Black Hawk Down and saw the movie. There is a person in the book Dan Schilling. I’ve also seen a few documentaries with him and he looks a lot like you. Is he related to you?

    If so, please pass on a big “thank you” to him for everything he’s done for this country.

    Best of luck next season.

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38 Pitches

Curt Schilling's Official Blog

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