Chris is in the Salt Lake Valley right now getting his physical and blood work and other things that I can only imagine, to get him ready to join the Marines. He will be swearing in today and we are going to go and watch that happen.
Chris is one of the most friendly, kindest, hardest working and handsomest people you can ever meet.
When we moved to a new neighborhood he would go to EVERY single house to see if there were "friends" there to play. If they weren't his own age, he would talk with them anyway. He made friends with many families and one in particular that the kids were almost all grown and he was only 11. He has spent many New Years Eve and other times with that family. He helped them with a wedding reception in their yard. He is friends with all their (now) married kids.
He has all the older people up here in love with him because he has always talked with them and helped them with yard work or anything else they might ask of him.
He has always had a gift to talk with anyone. We lived in Florida for five years. We would frequently go to parks and the beach. I remember one time at a park, in Florida, Chris was about seven. I was trying to corral the kids and keep track of all of them and Chris went to a picnic area close by that had all these old people that were having fun, talking and eating. Chris started talking to a bunch of them. They fell in love with him instantly. They told me what a special kid he was then, but I already knew.
After we moved back to Utah, one summer I took all four kids to Payson Lake. I had to use the bathroom in the worst way when we first arrived, so I told my kids to stay close by and when I came out, Chris was already fishing with someone else's fishing pole. He had made a friend in the shortest time possible.
That is how he is still.
But now, he is mostly grown up and has decided that the Marines is the place for him. I'm mostly convinced. He will have so much discipline that I think he may yet learn how to keep his room clean and balance his checkbook. He will be very active and he isn't happy unless he is active helping with bales of hay or throwing rolls of something onto roofs of St. George. He will be able to learn about engines, whether that is Diesel or airplane and helicopter. But with all of this comes the possibility of serving on the front lines of a war and that is what I worry about the most.
I remember many years ago listening to Dr. Laura and a mom called in a near panic and said that her son had joined the military and asked what can she do about it. Dr. Laura said wisely, "If not your son, then whose son". I believe that. Or else, I'd tie him up and demand he never join.
I will support him. I am very proud of him as he makes tough decisions to do something very noble, brave and praiseworthy. Just like he's always been.
Semper Fi means "always faithful" and I think he has it in him already.