As I woke up early the day before Thanksgiving, my thoughts were of our veterans and the countless individuals who helped in so many ways to help make the George E. Wahlen Ogden Veterans Home a reality.
From young men like Darian Hester, who was among the very first to donate, and Issac McIntosh, who participated in the Veterans Tribute Tower Bell casting.
His grandfather, Mel Mcintosh, was a World War II veteran.
There were also many not-so-young folks, such as World War II Marine Raider, Darrel Sarge Loveland, who was the first to start the campaign to put military-themed blankets on every bed and also helped sponsor a room.
So many great individuals and groups organized to make lap quilts, and there were so many offers of books and donations of equipment.
In the near future we will do an ad in the Standard-Examiner -- our biggest cheerleader -- thanking our donors who helped us raise more than $300,000
As I looked over the crowd on dedication day, I was touched by the fact that I saw former enlisted service members and admirals and generals, from World War II veterans to current-conflict veterans and their families.
Thank you to our elected officials, led by Utah Rep. Brad Dee, R-Washington Terrace, who had the vision to fully fund the project.
My only hope is that we not offend any who have helped in any way, because we owe so much to so many.
For that we are so deeply grateful.
We are still completing the finishing touches on our facility. With the help of our contractor, Big D, and our operator, Avalon Healthcare, I am optimistic we can start admitting our veterans in January. Watch for our grand opening.
As you go about this holiday season, please remember our veterans, our service members and especially their families who may need a little help while dad or mom are away defending us. Please consider helping shovel their sidewalks or offer to help with their children to give mom a break.
Thank you seems like not enough
Schow is the executive director of the Utah Department of Veterans Affairs.