My brother is six years my junior and we’ve had a good, albeit sometimes rocky, relationship. He was your typical youngest child- the one everyone loved to dote on and baby. He has a great sense of humor and would keep us rolling with laughter. But he was also the “black sheep” for awhile too. After years of issues, he is back on track again. He’s in the Army now and we couldn’t be prouder.
I think my daughter, the Redhead, has picked up on our pride in Andy. Her uncle is in the medical corps so when we are out shopping she is always scouting band-aids for him. She was perfectly giddy one day when she found camo band-aids. We bought them and mailed them to him immediately.
Andy graduated from boot camp in Ft. Benning, Georgia. My husband and I took our daughter to see him for this special occasion. Redhead was amazed at the pageantry and the tactical displays. And she was very proud to call her “so-jer” (soldier) uncle. Needless to say, she’s happily told anyone who would listen that her uncle was in the Army and one day she will go “to Army too.” (Particularly if they get pink camouflage for her.)
While we were visiting with Andy, he tried to teach Red the Army’s “hoo-ah” yell. She altered it slightly to “hoo-up” and thought it sounded lovely that way. No amount of teaching could get her to change it! So her uncle gave up and it became a joke in the family that the Army-proud niece couldn’t quite say the phrase.
We put our “Army Strong” bumper sticker on the car and while out shopping one afternoon, we decided to stop at McDonalds for her favorite apple juice box and cheeseburger without ketchup. As we were getting out of the car, a truck full of construction workers pulled in. Loud and proud, they hollered “hoo-ah” and waved at our Army sticker. Without skipping a beat, Redhead yelled, “hoo-up” right back. If construction workers can giggle- they did.
Call me a proud Army sister