A Legacy of Love and
here to read related article in Forsyth County News, Sunday, July 22,
2007, Page 11A
In these uncertain times, we
find ourselves questioning many things. We wonder what gas prices
will be when we wake up, what interest rates will go to, what our
retirement options will be, and we wonder about our current job
security. There is also the question of our nation's security-who
our real enemy is and how truly safe we are in this great nation of
ours. Right after September 11, 2001, when terrorist attacked the
World Trade Towers, we bound together as a nation, filling our churches,
praying for God's protection; patriotism was at an all time high. As
time passes, we tend to forget and unfortunately we become less mindful of
those serving this great country.
In January 2006, we were
awakened to a reality of what protecting our freedom really meant when our
son, John Henry Wade, III, came to us with the news that he wanted to be a
United States Marine. John was only a senior at South Forsyth High
School, seventeen years of age, but very determined of his decision to be
a Marine. He had researched the Marine Corp website, and felt it was
what he was purposed to do. Looking back at the legacy of love for
our country and loyalty of so many in our family who have served, we
understand that this was his destiny! John graduated in May of 2006
from South Forsyth High and left for Parris Island in January of 2007.
John graduated from Camp
Geiger in Jacksonville, N.C., served in Iraq and is now stationed in
Parris Island, South Carolina.
We have seen our son more
focused and determined than ever to fulfill his desire to serve our
country. Attending the Marine Corp graduation at Parris Island in
Beaufort, S.C., in April was one of our proudest moments as parents.
Not only were we proud of our son, John, but to see so many focused young
men and women, leaving the comfort of home, and making the sacrifice of
serving the USA, is overwhelming. We were so encouraged to see the
dedication of these young Marines to do their best, despite the
difficulties. Thirteen weeks of training, physically and mentally,
for what lies ahead, is almost unimaginable unless you are there or have
been there. While you and I go about our daily tasks, these men and
women are training for the future security of our nation, for the freedom
we so enjoy! If you would like to send a word of encouragement,
John's address is PFC Wade, John III, 2D Bn 3D Mar Echo Comp. Weapons PLT,
Unit 44050, FPO AP 96607-4050.
As we look back over our
family's service to our country, we stand in amazement at the number of
family members who have served. Beginning with John's
great-great-great grandfather, James A. Creamer, who served in the
Confederate Army during the Civil War, joining in August of 1863. He
served in the Third Georgia Calvary, and was captured by Union soldiers in
Dec. 1863, close to Knoxville, Tennessee. Pvt. Creamer was taken to
the Federal Prison Camp in Rock Island, Illinois, where he died on January
20, 1864, and is now buried in the Federal Prison Cemetery at Rock Island.
John's great grandfather,
Lemuel Cliff Creamer, born March 23, 1892, served in WWI, under General
Pershing. He trained at Camp Gordon in 1917. He was sent to
Camp Merritt, New Jersey, where he was presented a New Testament Bible by
the New York Bible Society before shipping out to France and
Germany. This Bible, which is ninety years old, is still a part of
our family today, and if only it could tell the journey it has taken.
It was carried to France and
Germany during WWI, and brought back safely to American soil, later to be
given to John's grandfather, Calvin A. Thompson. John's great
grandfather presented it to his son-in-law, saying, "All I ask is
that you stay safe and bring it back to me." Pvt. Thompson
carried this same New Testament to the shores of England, then to France,
Germany, then on to Austria, in WWII, leaving the states in June
1944. It traveled many miles and was brought safely back home.
Little did these two men who
carried this precious New Testament realize that they would someday see it
leave for foreign soil again, when Lemuel Cliff's son, Pvt. Donald C.
Creamer, served in the Vietnam War, 1966-67. Yes, this same New
Testament was sent with the prayer that it would bring this family member
home safely, and it did. No one will ever know the journey this
Bible has taken, but God himself. In war times like these, we know
it was but for the grace of God and His hand of protection that these men
came home safely.
John's grandmother, Laura Jane
Creamer Thompson, who is now eighty-one, began to share how she wanted
John to also carry this New Testament as part of our family's legacy and
tradition. "What a precious thing, that this same New Testament
which was carried by my father, my husband, and my only brother, will now
be carried by John, my grandson, ninety years later," she says.
"I pray daily for John's protection and for God to order his
Inside this New Testament are
messages from Theodore Roosevelt and General Pershing written in 1917,
that read as follows:
Col. Roosevelt's Message to
the Troops through the New York Bible Society: The teachings of
the New Testament are foreshadowed in Micah's verse (Micah 6:8):
"What more does the Lord require of thee than to do justice, and to
love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God."
Do Justice: and
therefore fight valiantly against the armies of Germany and Turkey, for
these nations in this crisis stand for the reign of Moloch and Beelzebub
on this earth.
Love Mercy: treat
prisoners well, succor the wounded, treat every woman as if she was your
sister, care for the little children, and be tender to the old and the
Walk Humbly: you will
do so as you study the life and teachings of the Saviour.
May the God of justice and
mercy have you in His keeping.
Theodore Roosevelt, June 5,
General Pershing's Message
through the New York Bible Society: To the American
Soldier aroused against a nation raging war in violation of all Christian
principles, our people are fighting in the cause of liberty.
Hardships will be your lot,
but trust in God will give you comfort. Temptation will befall you,
but the teachings of our Savior will give you strength.
Let your valor as a soldier
and your conduct as a man be an inspiration to your comrades and an honor
to your country.
Pershing, August 10, 1917
As we researched our history
of military service, John has had a great-great-great grandfather to
serve, a great grandfather, two grandfathers eight great uncles, an uncle,
Pvt. Anthony R. Wade, who also served in Vietnam, and several cousins on
both sides of the family. How grateful we are for each one of them.
As you can see, our family's
love for country, and the loyalty of serving our nation, is why we feel
John is fulfilling his purpose. When told it was not a good time to
join, it was wartime, John emphatically said, "When did my
grandfathers serve, when did my uncles service...I am no better to serve
in war time than they were." What do you say to a son, whose
love for his country far exceeds his fear of the future? We look
back on his childhood, we remember the camouflage birthday cakes, the
trips to the Army Salvage stores, the forts built, and the metal box kept
in his room of his grandfathers' army medals, and dog tags. His
favorite channel was the history channel, and the war campaigns that had
taken place. He was protective of family and friends. He was
patriotic from a young age. All these things were signs of a Marine
in the making.
Only a few weeks ago while
visiting with John, again, he said to us. "We live in the greatest
nation on earth. I cannot even imagine anyone not wanting to serve
our country. I am so glad to be able to serve for our freedom."
Henry Wade, John's dad, writes
from his heart the following: "Our Fathers, who fought wars on
our soil or far away, will always be remembered. We honor those who
have died for our freedom, and pray that they will never be
forgotten. My father, John Henry Wade, Sr., never talked of war to
me until his old age. The things he witnessed were unimaginable in
WWII. Once he did say his unit was one of the first to come across a
concentration camp and he cried as he told me. I always prayed my
children would never have to go where my father did, but little did I
know, it is in our blood to serve...my father, my brother, and now my
son! I know in my heart my son has what it takes to be a Marine,
because it is in his bloodline on both sides of his family. I am
proud to have a son who is willing to put on our country's uniform to
protect and serve. May each of you remember, no matter where you
stand or what you believe about certain issues of war, our men and women
are doing what they believe in--protecting our country. May God
direct their footsteps, and always protect our men and women in
uniform. God bless this great nation of ours! May we, those of
us enjoying this freedom, never take it for granted, and pray daily for
the leadership of our nation, and each one serving."
John graduated from Camp
Geiger in Jacksonville, N.C., served in Iraq and is now stationed in
Parris Island, South Carolina. We stand with
him and all other men and women making this choice to serve.
We also want to take the time
to thank each person who has served in any capacity of the military.
We enjoy our freedom because of your love for our country and loyalty to
serve. We understand that we may not always agree with every
decision being made by those in leadership, but it does not change the
fact that our men and women in uniform serve sacrificially for our
We must never stop praying for
our sons and daughters, husbands and wives, fathers and mothers, who are
daily protecting the freedom we are blessed to have. Make yourself a
reminder to pray daily for their protection and well-being, to come home
honored and remembered for the sacrifices made. Judy Wade
(proud mom of a United States Marine - Semper Fi)
The Marine's Prayer
Almighty Father, whose command
is over all and whose love never fails, make me aware of thy presence and
obedient to thy will. Keep me true to my best self, guarding me
against dishonesty in purpose and deed and helping me to live so that I
can face my fellow Marines, my loved ones and Thee without shame or
fear. Protect my family. give me the will to do the work
of a Marine and to accept my share of responsibilities with vigor and
enthusiasm. Grant me the courage to be proficient in my daily
performance. Keep me loyal and faithful to my superiors and to the
duties my country and the Marine Corps have entrusted to me. Make me
considerate of those committed to my leadership. Help me to wear my
uniform with dignity, and let it remind me daily of the traditions which I
must uphold. If I am inclined to doubt, steady my faith. If I
am tempted, make me strong to resist. If I should miss the mark,
give me courage to try again. Guide me with the light of truth and
grant me wisdom by which I may understand the answer to my prayer.
Believe in your dreams.
Believe in today. Believe that you are loved. Believe that you
make a difference. Believe we can build a better world.
Believe when others might not. Believe that there's light at the end
of the tunnel. Believe that you may be that light for someone
else. Believe that the best is yet to be. Believe in
yourself. Kodi Yomada
Son, we believe in you. We are so proud of you!
Mom and Dad
Heather, Brian and Madeline,
Friends and Family