I’ve been trying to find the words to say about the last two days, and I hope what I say today will suffice. I had a rare opportunity to meet with one of my Marines. That in and of itself wasn’t unusual, as I try to catch up with my old buddies when I can. No, the reason he was in Utah indeed was something unique. Something special.
Jay Knight was a fellow member of 2/7 in Weapons Company. We did a tour to Iraq together, and we became friends. Yesterday he made it to Utah. It wasn’t to visit me. He wasn’t on vacation to enjoy our outdoor sporting. And he certainly didn’t fly in.
He has been riding his bike cross country to raise money for Child’s Play, an organization that helps supply games and toys for kids in children hospitals. He’s been doing this in honor of one of our fallen brothers, Johnny Strong.
He started his ride in Boston over 100 days ago. I was lucky and honored to give him a place to stay for the night.
As I talked to Jay about his experience, I couldn’t help but tear up a little as he recalled the stories of amazing people across the country who stepped up to help the cause. My heart strings were pulled as he told me about the kids he met, and the courage they displayed facing their odds of battling cancer or other terminal illnesses. Each story he told reminded me of why America is such a wonderful place.
We were all connected in helping this young man accomplish something greater than any one of us alone. Through I only played a small part in this Pax2Pax ride, I am left with the feeling that I could be doing more, and have resolved to do so.
Jay has showed the true characterization of service. He and his team are extraordinary people, and I know Johnny is smiling up in Heaven as Jay has passed each mile.
I am blessed to know such an exemplary Marine, and I am proud to call him brother. I encourage you to donate if you are able. This is a great cause to bring joy into children’s lives as they face dark times. I say we help shine a light for them.
You can read about the journey and donate at http://www.Pax2Pax.org. Even $10 helps a child with a little happiness. This is one of the best causes and I cannot thank Jay enough for helping shed some light on Child’s Play, and taking on this task.
I wish you the best brother. Godspeed. You are doing a truly great thing for others.