Local News

Army Wife Blogs to Garner Support for Troops, Families

Posted January 12, 2007

— President Bush's new strategy in Iraq has touched off a vigorous debate, but there's no debating that military families are shouldering much of the burden in the war. That's something the wife of a Fort Bragg soldier said America tends to forget.

Rebekah Sanderlin heard all 2,900 words of the President's speech Wednesday night, including his plan to send 20,000 additional American troops to Iraq.

"They're scrambling,” Sanderlin said. “They're working nonstop and facing all kinds of dangers. I can't imagine anyone who's in Iraq right now who would be disappointed to hear they're getting help."

Sanderlin is an Army wife and the mother of a 2-year-old. Her husband will deploy to Afghanistan this year.

She writes a blog on the Fayetteville Observer's Web site. Friday, she addressed her remarks to the nation.

"There's a popular saying in military towns like mine: the American military went to war, and Americans went to the mall,” Sanderlin wrote.

On New Year's Eve, her words aired on National Public Radio.

"When I talk to civilians about the war and military issues, it's sort of a political issue with civilians," Sanderlin said. "We feel we're carrying the weight of the country while everyone else goes off and goes back to life like it was before the war."

But in Sanderlin’s home, as well as other military homes in Fayetteville, the war is deeply personal.

"It's not Republicans and Democrats,” she said. “It's Daddy, it's honey."

But what is the rest of America to do -- the America far beyond Fort Bragg? Lending an empathetic ear helps, Sanderlin said. She also asks Americans to say thanks to those who serve.

"Being in a non-military town is incredibly difficult when having a husband deployed, because people don't understand,” Sanderlin said. "I've come to tears before when somebody has stopped me and said, ‘I appreciate your service.’”

Sanderlin told WRAL she prefers not to look at the current conflict as the Iraq War, but rather as the global war on terrorism. She said it's important not to forget that many American soldiers are serving and dying in Afghanistan, as well.

This story is closed for comments.

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  • gvmtcheese Jan 15, 2007

    Until there is a draft, I do not owe them anything. I am thankful that they are doing what they signed up to do.

  • Lefty Jan 15, 2007

    Regardless of what your opinions are of the war or the President, the efforts and sacrifices of these fine people are the reason one CAN go to the mall without the fear of some terrorist walking up to you and letting you participate in him becoming a martyr for his cause. Our troops, both male and female, are putting their lives on the line everyday to keep that sort of thing from happening. I, for one, feel that we OWE them our respect, thanks and support.

  • gvmtcheese Jan 15, 2007

    Thanks for doing what you signed up to do! It takes alot of guts to be owned by the federal government. It takes even more guts to be at the behest of a wacked out president.

  • queenwolfert Jan 14, 2007

    I completely agree with you about how unaffected the rest of America seems to be. You seem to hit a nerve with the virility of some men by stating this though huh? Are the military different than teachers, professors, etc..? Yes. Although I take nothing away from the job that teachers do (I aspire to be one someday) the job is very different. It takes a different kind of human being to be a soldier. It takes someone that's willing to sacrifice quite a bit of his or her personal life in addition to doing a very tough job (mentally as well as physically although to hear John Kerry speak of soldiers you would think they are all idiots). I understand it is a volunteer force and they could just as easily get out. However, these are people that choose to serve their country. They are men and women that feel the calling to protect, a bit of a sense of adventure, and a personal sacrifice that others outside the military can never understand. I know... I too am a proud military wife....

  • nascarnutnc Jan 14, 2007

    Kind of remeinds me of the story I heard a cople of years ago. it was about a army reservist that got call up. They said it was not fair because they did not realize that they would have to go to war. Da, you joined the army, it is not just about all the GI bill. The army exists to go to war if we need to. I agree that we did not have to go to war in the situation. However, they liked the benefits when they were playing weekend worrior. So now we ask that you earn all those GI benefits, so stop the whining.

  • BOHICA Jan 14, 2007

    I would like to say that I thank God everyday for what has been done to protect our Country. There have been so many men and women that have lost their lives which is very sad. All we can do now is pray for the ones that are serving now that God will bless them and keep them in his loving care. I also wish their families blessings as well and the comfort of our God from above to know that their love ones are trying to keep them safe as well.

  • jthiespowell Jan 14, 2007

    I support the troops.
    I give what I can.
    I would give up a plane ticket so a soldier could get home.
    I enjoy my freedom and I'm thankful for those that are fighting for it.
    I pray for members of the military and if one of them needed something, anything in my place of work they would get it.
    I'm sorry your husband is gone. What an awful thing to be missing your husband and father.
    Tell me what else I can do, because I'm SICK and TIRED of hearing that because I didn't sign up for the military i should drop my life and live to support an effort in Iraq that I don't beleive should be taking place to the extent it has. American's go to the mall because we have lives to lead. I can't put mine on hold for the military. I have bills to pay and people that rely on me. I don't know what to tell you.

  • dalopezus Jan 14, 2007

    God Bless our troops.

  • superman Jan 13, 2007

    There are many professions and we should appreciate them all. People sign up for the military, teachers agree to teach and doctors agree to doctor. So whats so special about the military? I hate to see grown people cry. Work can be very stressful no matter what your occupation. You should deal with it or find something else to do. Military life must be fun and interesting when you stay at home and get paid -- but when u have to do what u signed up to do-- it becomes a different story. If u dont like the military dont sign up again. Have you told your childs teacher u appreciate their efforts-- you told your doctor how much u appreciate him. You send presents to the police and the fire department. We all have our place in society and we all contribute equally. Enough said?

  • meth5476 Jan 13, 2007

    God bless your husband and all the men and women serving in the armed forces. Thank you and God bless the families who sacrifice their loved ones for this great country and our way of life.