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Posted: 2/26/2007 10:02:57 AM EST
[Last Edit: 2/26/2007 10:04:36 AM EST by SkyCatII]
Here is a cool story I found:


Sick Teen's Military Dreams Come True
By MELISSA NELSON
AP
EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE, FL (Feb. 26) - Weakened by a lifelong struggle with cystic fibrosis, 14-year-old Riley Woina dreamed of being strong like the heroes he'd seen in war movies like "Black Hawk Down."

'This Is Awesome'
Talk About It: Post Thoughts
He wanted to parachute, fire rounds, wear a uniform. He wasn't scared of some of the most grueling training the Army has to offer.

So when he was offered the opportunity through the Make-A-Wish foundation to realize his dream, he jumped at the chance. Recently, the Plymouth, Conn., teen got to spend a week watching the U.S. Army's 6th Ranger Training Battalion train in Florida - and even try many of the tasks himself.

"You always want what you cannot have and he'll never be able to join the Army because of his cystic fibrosis, so of course he wants that more than anyone else would. He would join the Army today if he could," said his mother, Susan Woina.

Riley is the first child to ask Make-A-Wish to visit a Ranger camp, said Capt. Jeremiah Cordovano, spokesman for the 6th Ranger Battalion. It was an unusual choice - the foundation often grants wishes for Walt Disney World trips or shopping sprees.

"I knew I probably wouldn't be able to do anything like this again. They do everything down here, the swamp training, everything," Riley said, while eating with his new Ranger buddies in the chow hall at Camp James E. Rudder.

The camp is where Rangers spend 18 grueling days at the end of their 62-day training. Rangers go through realistic combat scenarios and are typically exhausted when they arrive, said Cordovano. But, "you really get to see what you are made of and if you have what it takes to be a combat leader," he said.

During the week, the 80-pound teen got to ride in a helicopter, traverse the swamps with Rangers in an inflatable Zodiac boat and witness a 64-paratrooper night jump from inside a C-130. He even got personalized fatigues, complete with his own combat boots and dog tags.

He also was presented with his own flight suit, a "U.S. Army Air Ambulance Detachment" patch, and his pilot's wings from an 82nd Airborne flight crew. Rangers also helped him to radio his mom from the helicopter while hovering above the beach.

"Mom, this is Riley, this is awesome," he said.

"Riley, I'm glad you're having a good time," she said.

The Rangers showed Riley how to deploy a parachute and a reserve parachute. As his parents and older brother, Ryan, laughed at Riley's enthusiasm, Master Sgts. Jose Morengo and Alexander Barnett rolled on the ground, jumped off benches and unfurled the parachutes.

He got to practice shooting blank M4 rounds and help clear a training room using grenade simulators.

Even a black eye, which he received as Morengo pulled the rip cord grip on a reserve parachute strapped around Riley's waist, didn't keep Riley from smiling. Morengo gave Riley the rip cord grip as a souvenir, explaining that it was the ultimate trophy of surviving a harrowing experience.

Riley's cystic fibrosis causes a buildup of a thick mucus that makes breathing difficult and inhibits absorption of nutrients, stunting growth. Riley takes nutritional supplements, respiratory medications, uses an inhaler and sleeps with a special vest that helps to shake up and clear out the mucus in his lungs while he sleeps.

But the Rangers who met him said that he's got the fortitude it takes to be a Ranger. Later this month, he'll get to go to Fort Benning, Ga.,with the successful students for graduation ceremonies.

"He's got nothing to prove to us, he's tough enough," Morengo said.

The experience didn't make Riley fear the grueling physical punishment Rangers experience at Camp Rudder, either - and he wasn't sympathetic.

"It's a way of life for them, they are the ones that signed up for it so it's their fault," he said, as the Rangers around him laughed.


Riley Woina, 14, smiles as he comes out of a building that he and two Rangers "cleared" during his visit to an Army Ranger camp on Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

news.aol.com/topnews/articles/_a/sick-teens-military-dreams-come-true/20070226100109990001
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:04:53 AM EST
Awesome story.


Way better than the sick kids who just want a shoe signed by Jordan or Shaq.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:05:09 AM EST
Wow, that's really cool. I'm kind of stunned that Make-a-Wish would support such a thing though. It was my understanding that they wouldn't fund hunting trips in the past, or am I mistaken?
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:05:39 AM EST
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:06:24 AM EST
Wow.

Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:06:50 AM EST
That rocks.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:07:34 AM EST

Originally Posted By Forest:
Best news I've read all day. Thanks for sharing it.




+1
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:07:50 AM EST
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:08:58 AM EST
I thought that it would be nice to share some news that won't serve to piss everyone off.

Dang, I want to do what that kid did.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:09:59 AM EST
that is so awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

+10
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:10:32 AM EST
Great story.

Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:13:30 AM EST
that's one of the coolest things i've ever read.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:14:21 AM EST
That just turned my day around wow.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:15:21 AM EST
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:23:26 AM EST


Hooah!!!!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:24:37 AM EST
Nice trigger control.

Warms my heart.

Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:25:56 AM EST
I wonder how many guys didn't quit because they didn't want to disappoint the little guy?

Just curious.........
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:26:14 AM EST

Originally Posted By Redmanfms:
Wow, that's really cool. I'm kind of stunned that Make-a-Wish would support such a thing though. It was my understanding that they wouldn't fund hunting trips in the past, or am I mistaken?


No they won't which is why I've given some money to www.huntofalifetime.org/index.shtml.

This is out of character for them and exceptionally cool.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:28:27 AM EST
Fug'n A!

I can see the fist wringing and cries of woe from libtards everwhere who read that article.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:30:39 AM EST
Awsome!!!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:31:18 AM EST
That is awesome
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:32:31 AM EST
WOW

Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:34:32 AM EST
Made me smile the whole time I read the article.

Way to go, Rangers!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:34:39 AM EST
[Last Edit: 2/26/2007 10:35:22 AM EST by bytor94]

Originally Posted By Boom_Stick:
Fug'n A!


I can see the fist wringing and cries of woe from libtards everwhere who read that article.



Fuck 'em, that's kids better than any of those libtard pussies.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:34:59 AM EST
i just emailed that to my friend down at fort benning. what a great story.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:35:16 AM EST
Good stuff!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:35:23 AM EST
Ranger Up - way to go guys!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:35:49 AM EST
Some of my liberal friends wonder why I support our troops.

This is just one reason.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:40:16 AM EST
Wow, that is amazing. I hope that kid is all smiles for the rest of his life.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:45:00 AM EST
To be involved in something like that is extremely rewarding.

Before I retired from the USAF I worked as a coordinator for the "Pilot For A Day" program at Charleston AFB. We would bring a chronically/terminally ill kid from the Medical University Children's Hospital on base for a VIP tour.

The day typically involved shooting the bad guys in the FATS simulator, a tour of a C-17, and flight time in the pilot's seat of the C-17 simulator. The tour varied according to the kid's interests. I took one up into the control tower - the controllers let him talk to crews on inbound aircraft. For another we put the kid in the cab of a crash truck and had the fire department light off the fire pit, and let the kid put it out with the remote controlled water cannon on top of the truck.

The day would end at the auditorium of the 17th Airlift Squadron. Everybody on duty would report to the auditorium and be called to attention. The squadron commander pinned pilot wings on our guest and would present him with a lot of cool stuff to take home.

Out of my 21 years of service, some of the most memorable moments were from that program.

I'm glad Riley got his day as a Ranger!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 10:46:58 AM EST
Yeah,

I saw this posted over at militaryphotos.net real heart wrenching story.

Its easy to forget sometimes that kids look up to military folks like they do we're their heros.



Too bad the kid is so sick he would have made a hell of a Ranger.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 11:19:11 AM EST
Not at all what I thought this story was going to be about. I was thinking that maybe Fedex accidentally mis-delivered a shipment of m16s & grenades...Great story nonetheless.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 11:21:20 AM EST

Originally Posted By MisterWilson:
Not at all what I thought this story was going to be about. I was thinking that maybe Fedex accidentally mis-delivered a shipment of m16s & grenades...Great story nonetheless.


That would've been awesome, however, the title would've been something more sensational.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 11:51:21 AM EST
For a real challenge he should have asked to be a Marine
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 11:55:19 AM EST

Originally Posted By Wobblin-Goblin:
Made me smile the whole time I read the article.

Way to go, Rangers!


+1
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 11:57:30 AM EST

Originally Posted By Brohawk:
To be involved in something like that is extremely rewarding.

Before I retired from the USAF I worked as a coordinator for the "Pilot For A Day" program at Charleston AFB. We would bring a chronically/terminally ill kid from the Medical University Children's Hospital on base for a VIP tour.

The day typically involved shooting the bad guys in the FATS simulator, a tour of a C-17, and flight time in the pilot's seat of the C-17 simulator. The tour varied according to the kid's interests. I took one up into the control tower - the controllers let him talk to crews on inbound aircraft. For another we put the kid in the cab of a crash truck and had the fire department light off the fire pit, and let the kid put it out with the remote controlled water cannon on top of the truck.

The day would end at the auditorium of the 17th Airlift Squadron. Everybody on duty would report to the auditorium and be called to attention. The squadron commander pinned pilot wings on our guest and would present him with a lot of cool stuff to take home.

Out of my 21 years of service, some of the most memorable moments were from that program.

I'm glad Riley got his day as a Ranger!


that's a great story as well. thanks for serving our country, and for putting smiles on the faces of children who've had a tough life.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 12:04:27 PM EST
That is awesome.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 2:39:39 PM EST

Originally Posted By SkyCatII:

Dang, I want to do what that kid did.


+1

What an awesome story!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 2:53:05 PM EST

Originally Posted By piccolo:

Originally Posted By Forest:
Best news I've read all day. Thanks for sharing it.




+1

+2.
Amazing.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 3:18:14 PM EST
Excellent

=D
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 3:34:23 PM EST
As someone else said, reading that made me day alot brighter than it was. God bless them all.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 3:58:52 PM EST
Thats fuckin' awesome!!

I guarantee that kid will never forget that and the people he met.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 4:08:44 PM EST
Just cool, fuckin cool..
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 4:31:34 PM EST
Put a big smile on my face. Thanks for sharing!
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 4:55:00 PM EST
One of my fondest memories was working at Louisiana Lion's Camp when soldiers from Ft Polk would come out and show off gear for the kids. They trucked out a M113 once and flew OH58's out a few times.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 5:09:24 PM EST
[Last Edit: 2/26/2007 5:09:57 PM EST by SteelonSteel]
That's just an all around great story. Warm feeling for everyone, even though we're far away.
Link Posted: 2/26/2007 5:14:31 PM EST
Wow.

Link Posted: 2/26/2007 5:16:08 PM EST

Originally Posted By frogwater:
Put a big smile on my face. Thanks for sharing!


No problem. I think this is the best response I've ever gotten from a thread I've posted

I wouldn't want it any other way. If one thread does well, may as well be this one.
Link Posted: 2/27/2007 3:35:40 AM EST
Right now, the Marine publicity machine is feverishly working on getting one of these kids to Parris Island....

Great story.

The kid seems to have heart, and those guys seemed to respect him for it.

Hey, for once, maybe my tax dollars did something worthwhile.
Link Posted: 2/27/2007 3:40:00 AM EST
Damn. Gotta say that one got me a little misty. Great story!
Link Posted: 2/27/2007 3:43:48 AM EST
Hey Lee what challenge? What jump school did you go to? Did you ever go through what it takes to become a Ranger?

Didn't think so.


Sua Sponte,
Prib
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