There is someone I’ve been wanting to introduce you folks to for quite some time. Problem was that I wasn’t sure exactly when the ‘right’ time would be. Now that he has his very own Facebook page, this must be it! (Click on the photo thumbnails for a larger view.)
I speak of none other than Franklin the Turtle. Companion to one of our very own American Heroes fighting for Liberty and Freedom.
Here is a little about Franklin in his own words…
“I have stayed with my guardian (Tony) for the last four years, my mommy (Hanah), sent me with her daddy to keep him company and safe on his first deployment…and I have been right by his side since. Here we go again….get ready for my travels and adventures…..!!!”
His longtime companion, Master-at-Arms First Class Anthony LaFrenier, USN, has this to say about Franklin…
“Franklin came to see me for the first time on a Saturday morning, September 10th, 2005. Franklin was sent to me by my youngest daughter, Hanah, to keep me company while I was away in Kuwait with the U.S. Navy.”
While serving in the Middle East mascot Franklin and his side-kick had many adventures and met many great American ‘Heroes in Uniform’ and a few who were not, like Charlie Daniels (Yep, The Bull is a big fan, too!), the Dallas Cowboy cheerleaders, and Montgomery-Gentry.
Later, at the end of that first deployment, the following was written in MA1 LaFrenier’s journal…
“A part of our awards ceremony would be dedicated to Franklin. Franklin received appointment from the CO as UM3 (Unit Mascot 3rd Class). Franklin’s appointment as a US Navy Petty Officer came with great responsibility, but no pay. We could not wait to be back with our families. Franklin would surely miss all the wonderful friends that he made on this deployment. But Franklin did his job wonderfully. Franklin did just as Hanah sent him to do, he kept me company.”
Along with that appointment, Franklin received the awards of the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal -and- the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with Bronze Deployment Device.
Now UM3 Franklin and MA1 Lafrenier are being sent off once again into the Sandbox to defend Liberty & Freedom from those who seek to drag Mankind back into the Dark Ages. I am asking ALL of my Dear Readers to jump on over to your Facebook accounts and send Franklin the Turtle a note of encouragement and thanks as he embarks on yet another deployment with his companion. You see, ‘We the People‘ have a part to play in our own defense. That part is to, like Franklin, keep up the morale of those brave men and women that are daily placing their lives on the line for all of us here at home.