Some Gave ALL!

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Stan4d, Apr 23, 2011.

  1. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Some Gave All.......Please remember my community as we tearfully Welcome home a Hero!

    Also please remember, I did this in memory of a hero. Do not make political statements!
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2011

  2. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Local Son Killed In Afghanistan

    Army corporal Joel Ramirez
    Daily Light Managing Editor
    Published: Tuesday, April 19, 2011 11:23 AM CDT
    The Waxahachie community is mourning the death of 2007 Waxahachie High School graduate Joel Ramirez, an Army corporal who lost his life Friday to an improvised explosive device in Ahmid Khan, Afghanistan.

    Ramirez' parents, Feliciano "Chano" and Irma Ramirez, and his siblings were notified Saturday night of the loss and have since received word that his body is now stateside at Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.

    "He's back to his country, Joel's younger brother, Daniel, said.

    Funeral arrangements remain unclear, however, as the family has not yet been notified as to when he will be brought back to Waxahachie. A viewing is planned along with a Mass at St. Joseph Catholic Church.

    As the family gathered at their home Monday, a steady stream of people came by to offer their condolences and to share memories of a bright, athletic, artistic young man who decided to enlist and go serve his country.

    "Nobody really knows the reason he did it, said Daniel, who graduated from Waxahachie High School a year after Joel, in 2008. "All we know is he really did like it.


    Joel enlisted in the U.S. Army about a year-and-a-half ago, going through boot camp at Fort Benning, Ga., before transferring to Fort Drum, N.Y. He had been deployed to Afghanistan about a month at the time of his death.

    A machine gunner in the service, the family said Joel excelled in the military - as he had at school with his studies and soccer.

    "He was first in his unit in accuracy. He was top of his class in physical fitness - he scored a 295 out of 300, Daniel said.

    The close-knit family has numerous stories to relate of their beloved Joel, from childhood through adulthood.

    "He was fast, he was very fast, Daniel said of his brother, who he fondly recalls being able to play three years of soccer together with at Waxahachie High School.

    The three surviving siblings recounted at length their childhood escapades - how they would play soccer in the house while their parents were at work ("We broke so many things, the girls shared) and how Joel came up with imaginative games for them to play when they were bored.

    They recalled how the two brothers discovered their dad was Santa Claus - and how Chano always seemed to figure out whatever it was that his and Irma's children had done.

    "Every day, every moment of every day, we were together, Daniel said. "I was the wild one; he was the calm one. I'd get him into trouble; he'd keep me out of trouble.

    "Right now, if this hadn't happened, what we would be doing is we would be together, he said. "He was fun, he had a good personality, he was a great guy to be around, Daniel said. "He made me laugh, he made everyone else laugh.

    Yet another memory of Joel is how he was an animal lover, someone who always had a pet, whether rabbits, lizards, pigeons, fish or dogs.

    "He loved animals, he always had animals, Daniel said, segueing into still another memory, of how the two boys were tough on toys as children.

    "I bought them Tonka trucks, Chano said with a smile in saying his two boys met their match with those. "We couldn't destroy them, Daniel agreed.

    Chano treasures a painting of an angel that Joel, an accomplished artist, gave him. The family recalls with a smile how Joel sketched a small drawing on an interior wall of a building at Fort Drum - and was subsequently ordered by his superior to enlarge and finish the piece because it was good. The sadness comes when they note, however, that his last work, an idyllic scene at a beach, remains unfinished. Chano said his son had just recently requested he send him a sketchbook; however, Joel died before he could do so.

    A final message

    The family had been able to keep in touch with Joel in Afghanistan through calls, letters and, mostly, Facebook. With the time difference, they would send a message, awaiting a reply that would come later.

    In the last voice message Joel left, "He said he was fine, happy, doing what he wanted to do. He missed us and he told us to keep writing him, Daniel said, saying that was Friday and his brother said he would call back later - but the next call never came.

    Chano said he'd repeatedly cautioned his son to beware of IEDs.

    "I'd tell him, 'Be careful. Be careful of the mines, he said.

    Joel had urged his family not to worry, telling them as a machine gunner, he and his ammunition carrier were at the back when their group was on patrol. The mine-sweeping specialists were at the front, he had told them, saying also that the patrols had recently switched from day time to night time, which was safer.

    The family hasn't received many details of the incident; they believe at least one other person, possibly more, was injured. As of Tuesday morning, the U.S. Department of Defense had not posted an official release on its website.

    A move to Waxahachie

    The Ramirez family moved to Waxahachie in December 2001, in part because of a job opportunity for Chano as a truck driver at the time, but primarily because Irma wanted their children to have a superior education.

    The family had spent the prior eight months in Mexico on their home place, moving there from California to care for Chano's father before he passed away. Daniel recalled how their family became even closer during those months. The ties to their relatives and the land, where they were raising cattle, had a lasting impact on all of them - and Joel had told his family that if something were to happen to him in the service that his wish was to be buried there.

    For the family, a similar sense of community and belonging also extends to Waxahachie, where Chano and Irma work as support staff members at the high school and where their two daughters, Maria and Christie, are now freshmen at the ninth grade academy.

    Daniel remarked that when he came in from out-of-town he was reminded of the lifelong friendships the family has developed in Waxahachie.

    "I showed up to a parking lot of people and I could see my mom's all right, my dad's all right. I felt love from everybody, he said.

    A pillar

    At the home, rosaries draped several of the framed photographs of Joel that were set out; as they move forward, the family will continue to draw on their faith.

    As the eldest son, Joel was a pillar to the family and Daniel said it's for him to serve in that role now: to help protect his sisters, to be there for his mom to rely on, to be his father's right hand.

    "It's going to be some big shoes to fill, he said. "It's a big blow, but the best fighters get back up. . I will keep him proud.

    Donations sought

    Donations are being sought to help with expenses the family is facing, including the cost to bury Joel at the family home place in Mexico. It remains unclear as to what extent the military might contribute.

    The Joel Ramirez Memorial Fund has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank to accept donations from the community.

    Contact JoAnn at or 469-517-1452.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2015
  3. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    DOD: 3 killed in IED attack

    Daily Light Managing Editor
    Published: Wednesday, April 20, 2011 11:29 AM CDT
    The U.S. Department of Defense announced Tuesday that Pfc. Joel A. Ramirez, 22, of Waxahachie was one of eight soldiers who died as a result of two separate enemy attacks April 16 in Afghanistan.

    All had been deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.

    Ramirez; Spc. Paul J. Atim, 27, of Green Bay, Wis.; and Spc. Charles J. Wren, 25, of Beeville, Texas, were killed when insurgents attacked their unit with an improvised explosive device, according to information released on the DOD's website, which said the soldiers were in Nimroz province, Afghanistan.

    They were assigned to the 1st Battalion, 32nd Infantry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 10th Mountain Division, Fort Drum, N.Y.

    Ramirez' family told the Daily Light on Monday that he had been deployed to Afghanistan a little more than a month. Ramirez' duty assignment was as a machine gunner.

    In a separate incident, five soldiers were killed when an Afghan National Army soldier attacked them with multiple grenades, according to the DOD.

    The DOD identified the deceased as Capt. Charles E. Ridgley Jr., 40, of Baltimore, Md.; Sgt. 1st Class Charles L. Adkins, 36, of Sandusky, Ohio; Staff Sgt. Cynthia R. Taylor, 39, of Columbus, Ga.; Sgt. Linda L. Pierre, 28, Immokalee, Fla.; and Spc. Joseph B. Cemper, 21, Warrensburg, Mo.

    Ridgley was assigned to the 17th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 3rd Maneuver Enhancement Brigade, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Anchorage, Alaska. Adkins, Taylor, Pierre and Cemper were assigned to the 101st Special Troops Battalion, 101st Sustainment Brigade, 101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Ky.

    The Joel Ramirez Memorial Fund account has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank for the community to assist with donations to defray expenses expected by his family.

    Ramirez, a 2007 Waxahachie High School graduate, had told his family that, in the event of his death, he wished to be buried on the family's home place in Mexico.

    Contact JoAnn at or 469-517-1452.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 15, 2015
  4. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Time to give back to family that has given so much

    Published: Friday, April 22, 2011 11:47 AM CDT
    Ruth Greenlee
    Guest columnist

    Chano Ramirez and his wife will too soon lay their boy to rest. I have never met their son but my gut goes sour with nausea when the reality of the loss of their boy comes to the front of my mind. I am also somewhat not surprised that Chano would raise a self-described "tip of the sword" that would give over his very existence for the freedom of this country, so valiantly and with honor.

    That's what makes Chano, Chano. Giving and sacrificing - even sacrificing his child's life for the freedom of us in this community and a nation.

    I first came to know Chano when my own son was in trouble in his senior year at Waxahachie High. My son was headed down a path that I knew one day would most likely compel me to pick out a coffin for him; a prospect that consumed me and proving to be more than I could bear at times. Those days were some of my darkest on this earth. And then I found a letter from a man I didn't know.

    The letter was hand written, three or four pages long on white paper and addressed to my son. I sat down on my son's bed and read through the words that were thoughtfully and lovingly penned describing to my son what it was the author saw in him. The letter described all that he thought my son was: God's son, a good example to his little brother, smart . and then all that my son was not: is not a liar, is not a user of drugs ... reading through tears, I realized someone saw my boy as I did. Someone had hope in my boy! Someone believed- what quite honestly I hadn't the courage to believe for, for quite some time- believed that possibly my son could turn things around!

    My son was worthy of time to handwrite a letter. My boy was redeemable in someone else's eyes. As some know, life with an addict is brutal and I had come to feel that maybe I was delusional in my hope for him, you know, like the parents you see on the news crying stating "but he was such a good boy!" after their child has made a catastrophic choice.

    But those words on those white pages poured hope into my heart and I literally felt my life inflate again; not only my life, but life that STILL existed in my son.

    The author made me realize that my son was alive and I haven't bought a coffin yet! The person that penned these words birthed a fight in me; fight to do all I could do to see that my boy had every opportunity to redeem himself and become what it was I had lost hope of him ever becoming! A complete stranger had given, through a little effort and time, life back to me and my family in ways that I'm certain he still doesn't realize.

    At the time assuming the letter was from a teacher at the high school, that's where I headed- I couldn't get to him fast enough to thank him for investing in my boy! I headed out for the high school, morning's face and sweats pants; I went straight to the office and asked the lady if I could speak to Mr. Chano - was he in class? She told me then that Chano wasn't a teacher but a custodian, "you know.Chano" she stated.

    I was stunned! You mean a custodian wrote the letter? A man that works so hard day in and day out going unnoticed by most took the time to pen a letter to my son conveying faith and hope in the future of a boy that most would surely consider "just another troubled kid.

    This man believed my son had potential to be someone better than what he had become!

    Performing day in and day out hard back breaking work, all the while taking notice of hurt and pain in a child not his own; putting his back and sweat into doing the dirty work that often goes unnoticed and then putting heart behind the nib of a pen to reach even further to serve. A custodian gave life to my hope; my hope in the life of my son.

    I began to cry. The picture of Christ washing His disciples' feet immediately became a living scene I witnessed first hand. My son and I had been served a sweet, sweet serving of unselfish and entirely undeserving grace and kindness that neither was expected nor could ever be repaid.

    From that day forward I quit thinking on the things for a funeral for my son but dreaming the dreams of a mother has for boy.

    Strictly by God's grace my son was led out of the situation he created for himself and now happily married to his sweetheart, working full-time, serves his church and this community counseling others that have taken the same path.

    But I will always believe that the grace of a custodian was what gave both mother and son proof that God sends angels to intercede on His behalf, because that is the epitome of a man named Chano - an angel with a pure servant's heart.

    My boy was not special, not significantly unique. My son was a lot like all the other students that come through Waxahachie High - burdened with uncertainty.

    It's Chano that set my son apart. I suspect that Chano knows the name of your son or daughter if they have attended WHS in the recent years. I would bet my last dollar Chano has taken notice of thousands of kids hurting or in trouble in his 10 years of hard diligent work.

    But what sets Chano above most and makes him truly unique is he takes the time to act on his notice of other's pain. He actually sits down pen in hand, and invests in our children straight from the core of his being, motivated by a wellspring of the purest kindness that makes Chano, Chano.

    I cannot convey the grief I have in writing this letter - I owe it to Chano though.

    For now as you may know, it is Chano that is buying a coffin for his own boy; it's his wife's motherly dreams for her boy that are being laid to rest soon; it was Chano's son reading a letter to his fallen brother on the evening news.

    So now it is I who wants to take some time to put pen to paper and publicly thank a man for investing in my son but, more importantly thank the author of a letter written years back for investing his son.

    It is my hope that we now take time to take notice of Chano's pain. It's our time to act on the notice of the unfathomable pain of a man who has given more than was ever asked or required.

    Let's give back as a community to a man that time and again, has quietly served the youth of this community by giving so much of himself - for he has now given us his very own boy - sadly yet another parallel to God's example of unconditional love that one can draw - Chano too gave his son so others might have freedom.

    It is my warm petition to my community that we all take notice and act on what it is we notice, you know, like Chano does.

    May God send angels to minister to Chano and his family - for He called one of His mightiest warriors home last Saturday to serve in His celestial legion - Pfc. Joel A. Ramirez, son of a mighty warrior on earth ... you know, Chano.

    - Still under His grace, Ruth Greenlee.

    Ruth Greenlee is a resident of Waxahachie.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 18, 2015
  5. ibdennyak

    ibdennyak Guest

    That is so sad. Heartbreaking enough to hear of the death of a faceless stranger, but the subsequent posts made it personal. Terrible to hear of someone with his whole future ahead of him having his life snuffed out in an instant, especially some one so outstanding. And the effect on his friends and family....terrible.

    Reading about Chano actually brought tears to my eyes. That someone so much in the background can be so thoughtful and caring reinstates my confidence in humanity. I would like to personally shake his hand some day. This story reminds me to look for the greatest things in the smallest places.

    And thanks Stan4rd for relaying this story. I was becoming very wrapped up in my own life, and needed a reminder that there are more important things.

    Maybe we can all take a moment to reflect on things.....I know I certainly did.
  6. azbill

    azbill Active Member

    thanks for this thread,,,

    my 2 favorite quotes are,,,

    'All Gave Some,,,Some Gave All'

    'The Land of The Free,,,BECAUSE of The Brave'
  7. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

  8. machiasmort

    machiasmort Active Member

    My respects.
  9. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Fallen hero to arrive at 11 a.m. Friday (April 29) at Mid-Way Regional Airport
    Published: Thursday, April 28, 2011 5:32 PM CDT
    ALERT: Arrival time for Joel Ramirez has been changed to 11 a.m. Friday at Mid-Way Airport. A procession will take place from Mid-Way and Wayne Boze Funeral Home along U.S. Highway 287, led by the Patriot Guard Riders. Residents are asked to line U.S. Highway 287 along the procession route to pay their respects in honor of the 22-year-old Waxahachie resident who gave his life for his country.

    The memorial service/Mass is slated for 6 p.m. Sunday at the Waxahachie Civic Center. 004.jpg

    Thanks to Killroy for this cartoon: idol.jpg
  10. Turtle Tedd

    Turtle Tedd Member

    Read this thread last has stayed in my thoughts since....Rest in Peace , Corporal Joel Ramirez, American Soldier and Hero , thankyou
  11. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

  12. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    ‘Welcome home, soldier’
    Community honors life of Joel Ramirez
    Daily Light Managing Editor
    Published: Monday, May 2, 2011 11:57 AM CDT
    The life and heroism of fallen hero PFC Joel Ramirez was memorialized Sunday during a special service with full military honors.

    Ramirez, a class of 2007 Waxahachie High School graduate, was killed in the line of duty April 16 in Afghanistan. Several thousand people turned out in tribute, many bearing placards and U.S. flags while standing vigil outside of the Waxahachie Civic Center while just as many attended the bilingual service inside.

    Ramirez leaves behind his parents, Feliciano “Chano” and Irma Ramirez, both support staff members at Waxahachie High School; his younger siblings, Daniel, Maria and Christie; and a 2-year-old daughter, Kaylee Marie.

    He also leaves an exemplary legacy of heroism, as noted by those speaking at his service.

    On behalf of the U.S. Government, Brigadier Gen. Thomas A. Vandal brought words of condolence to the grieving family.

    “Let me express our deepest sympathies,” the general said. “I am so sorry for your loss … . Words are seemingly inadequate to convey at times like these.”

    For his service in the fight against terrorism and oppression and in defense of the freedoms found in the United States, Ramirez “deserves our eternal gratitude,” Vandal said, describing the 22-year-old as an “exceptional soldier, a superb leader and a man of exceptional character.”

    Ramirez had served in a most challenging job with the military, that of an infantryman, the general said, saying, “He was a brave man in a brave band of brothers. (His fellow soldiers) knew him as a dedicated soldier driven to excellence in every mission. … (He) was the kind of soldier we all aspire to be. He is a true American hero and all of us are proud to have been brothers in arms with him.”

    A posthumous awarding of medals was done, with his parents receiving on behalf of their son Ramirez’s Purple Heart, the Bronze Star Medal, the Global War on Terrorism Medal, the Afghanistan Campaign Medal, the NATO Campaign Medal, the Good Conduct Medal and the Combat Infantry Badge.

    “He will forever be remembered for his actions,” Vandal said.

    After the conclusion of the indoor service, the family was escorted outside, where a military honor guard removed the flag from Ramirez’s casket. The general presented the flag to Ramirez’ parents, with a second flag presented to his daughter. The honor guard then fired a three-round volley before a military trumpeter played “Taps.”

    Before and during the service, patriotic songs were played and sung, including “The Star Spangled Banner,” “God Bless America” and “America the Beautiful,” with videos and photographs of Ramirez’s life also screened.

    During the indoor service, Waxahachie High School students Rebecca Bousquet and Stephen Erikson spoke on behalf of the student body, and had all of its members on hand to stand and surround the room in a human chain as tribute.

    That human chain was a visual representation of the students’ support for Ramirez and his family, especially his parents because of their loving interaction with students, Bousquet said.

    “It is very difficult to express the effect Irma and Chano have had on our school and community,” she said, remarking on how the couple’s kind words had often helped her through a day at school. “We are here to love and support you in every way possible. … Thank you for raising a very brave man. We will always remember him and never forget.”

    “I know he was an honorable man,” Erikson said, noting that the most honorable action a man can make is to give his life. “Sadly, Joel made the ultimate sacrifice for us. … I know Joel Ramirez is a hero; he has inspired all of us.”

    With Ramirez’s parents at their side, the fallen hero’s siblings each spoke, as did one of his friends from the service, each relating his or her special remembrances and sorrow at their loss.

    Maria said she’d always pictured a joyous reunion and recalled how her brother had assured her he’d come home: He didn’t break his promise – he was home – but it wasn’t how it was supposed to be. Saying he was a guardian angel now, she said she would always remember him.

    “The impact you had on my life will last forever,” Christie said of her brother, saying his life and death would “motivate me even more to be the best I can be.”

    Ramirez’s fellow soldier said the two were inseparable once they met and became friends. In meeting his friend’s family, the young man said he realized how special they were – and how Ramirez was the man he was because of his family.

    “From day one, as long as I can remember, Joel was around,” Daniel said of his brother. “He was my right hand man, my role model and also my hero. I am so proud to call him my brother.”

    Daniel remarked on the so-close relationship he and his brother had, and how they had competed against each other, trying to outdo one another.

    “I can’t picture my life without him,” Daniel said. “I’m going to miss my brother.”

    Military chaplain, Fr. Henry Drozd, recalled how, as a child in Ennis he stood and waved “to every soldier in every truck” in an Army convoy that passed through en route overseas during World War II.

    “For sure, many of those soldiers I waved goodbye to that day died, if not in the invasion of Salerno, Italy, then in other places,” he said. “I never dreamt that one day I would be a priest and a chaplain … that one day I would be at the funeral for Joel Ramirez.”

    Since World War I, many men from Ellis County have died in service to the country, Drozd said, saying, “All served their country and died for it. … ‘There is no greater love than this, that a man lay down his life.’

    “ … PFC Joel Ramirez, infantryman, died in Afghanistan,” Drozd said. “In death, God stretched out his arms to embrace him (and Ramirez) reached out to touch God’s face. God said, ‘Welcome home, my son. Welcome home, soldier.’”

    Contact JoAnn at
  13. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    Members of Westboro Baptist Church were in town, but the site of the memorial made it impossible to protest.....unless they did it across 2 different 4 lane highways.
  14. Stan4d

    Stan4d New Member

    A video of the procession from the airport to the funeral home from a patriot rider:

    This memorial Day the flags should be flown at half mast until noon. Use the Morning to remember and mourn. Use the afternoon to celebrate life in the memories of these heros.