Hello everyone and happy “Purple Up!” Day! That’s right, its that time of year again, the Month of the Military Child! And here with us today to celebrate is a friend of mine, Kassie Angle! I hope you enjoy our interview!
1. What is your favorite thing about being a Military Kid?
Everything...?? Yep, everything. 😉 I’ve known nothing different. Getting to move so often and see so many places is really amazing. I can’t imagine staying in one place my whole life. All the opportunities we’d never have had otherwise. The Army is a really strong community and knowing that our Army family will always be there for us is something I wouldn’t change for the world.
2. What is your least favorite thing about being a Military Kid?
Changes. Goodbyes. DEPLOYMENTS. Worrying about my dad getting killed. Ya know, those things that come with the territory but never get easier.
3. Name a few things you think people often forget about Military Kids?
We love it. We really do. When I was younger I never liked people thanking me for my service or sacrifice because...well, that’s just not how I felt. For one, I didn’t have a say in it (our family’s favorite analogy for Army kids is getting drafted), and for two, I loved this crazy life too much to think of it that way. Nowadays I can appreciate that more, but the truth is, no matter how hard it gets, we still love it.
And we don’t fit in anywhere else. Sometimes folks presume we’d be glad to be out of the Army now...but the Army is home. Anywhere else is way out of our comfort zone!
4. Where was your favorite base to live at? Why?
Ft. Hood. All the way. People deploy constantly from Ft. Hood, and there are thousands of people living there...so it kinda gets a bad rap. But it is an amazing place to live. Everybody’s in the same boat, and everybody knows it. If your dad’s deployed, so is everyone else’s. The community that builds is beautiful! (And Central Texas is physically beautiful, too... 😉) Knowing anyone will watch your back, just because we’re all Army—that everyone “gets it.” And with BLORA (Belton Lake Outdoor Recreation Area), the cavalry shows, the greatest FRGs (Family Readiness Group) in the world...the Army takes good care of its people. And the PX (Post Exchange; it’s like a store on base) there is a.m.a.z.i.n.g. Sometimes we want to go to Ft. Hood just to go to the PX!
5. Name a Base you would have liked to visit.
Somewhere I still have my list of posts in Virginia along with the Civil War battlefields nearest to each one...! 😉 I would’ve given just about anything to get stationed in VA. But my number one would definitely be Landstuhl. Landstuhl Regional Medical Center is the first stop for soldiers MEDEVACed (Medical evacuation) out of war zones, and there is an organization there called Soldiers’ Angels that I would love to volunteer with.
6. Anything else you think we should know about Military Kids?
Even the little kids understand more about Army life than you’d guess. Trust me on that. Looking back, it surprises me a little just how much I did understand at four and five. I don’t ever remember being taught that soldiers were killed in war, or that you salute the flag going down. And as I got older, seeing little friends with that same understanding that’s almost instinctual...I don’t know. That probably didn’t make any sense. 😉
And contrary to my younger self, if you know military kids, please tell them thank you. Honestly, no, we don’t want to be thanked for any sacrifice...chances are, we don’t feel like we’re the ones who’ve sacrificed. But sometimes it’s nice if someone notices that we do serve too. We might not take it in stride just then, but we’ll look back and feel honored. 💜
7. What is your favorite memory about being a Military Kid?
We’re gonna be here a while... Well, welcome home ceremonies are a natural choice—absolute chaos at an unreal hour, and it is the happiest, most exciting thing in the world. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to really convey the emotion of a welcome home ceremony. We’ve literally wished we could have welcome home ceremonies without deployments—they’re that thrilling. Of course, they probably wouldn’t be without waiting through a deployment for them. 😉 The time our brigade had a welcome-home-sign-painting party and twelve-year-old me had the brilliant idea to paint a giant flag out of handprints with only four or five kids around...a soldier who had pretty small hands ended up filling in most of the flag. Independence Day when we had half-a-dozen of Daddy’s single and unaccompanied soldiers over and sang around the piano, discovering all the soldiers’ hidden musical talents, and then ending with a wild punch-balloon fight with a soldier who was kind of our adopted brother. Having pizza with friends every single week one deployment. One of Daddy’s soldiers taking my brother and I to the range while Daddy was deployed. Sitting in the cockpit of a fighter jet. How do you pick...
Okay!! I’ve got it. The day after my 16th birthday, Rescue was doing sling-load training out over the ocean. One helicopter would pick up an old car, slung under the heli (helicopter), and carry it out to sea while another heli stayed along the shoreline, “covering fire.” Well, I ran up on our roof to watch them just as the “covering fire” heli went by a couple blocks down from our house. Just for fun, I saluted it, and all of a sudden it pivoted and came right towards the house. I just stood there frozen holding my salute and that big Seahawk buzzed right over my head and turned back out to sea. I went running downstairs and Josh said, “That helicopter went right over our house!” I said, “Oh, you have no idea,” and just started crying. Yeah...that one definitely takes the prize. Getting buzzed by a Rescue heli for my 16th birthday. 😭
8. How did being a Military Kid influence you as a writer?
Wow...this is a neat question. Of course, the first thing that comes to mind is all the experiences I’ve had that end up in stories. There’s a lot more real life in my stories than I usually care to admit. 😆However, on a more serious note, when I was about 15 it began to dawn on me that not everyone understands the Army life and that there is a lack of good sweet war stories to help them understand. One of my favorite writing quotes is “Listen to what others aren’t saying and write about the silence.” I guess this Army lifestyle has really opened my eyes to one of the silences. I’ve always been writing, but it was at that age that the Lord really opened my eyes to how I could use that writing—which would probably never have happened if we weren’t Army.
9. What is your favorite part of the writing process?
Writing the action scenes, haha! If I get in a rut writing a slow scene, I jump ahead and write something fast-paced. It’s absolutely contradictory, but I will tell you in the same breath that I don’t like torturing my characters and that I love writing action scenes. It’s just the easiest part for me, for whatever reason! As much as I love stories with “breather” scenes, I also love stories that just run from one intense scene to another—and sometimes that’s the best way for me to convey my story’s emotion.
10. Can you tell us a little about your current work in progress?
No, I throw out spoilers way too easy! 😉 Well...Tattered Wings is about a small-town police officer, his daughter who is searching for answers about her past, a wounded Airborne Ranger, and the dog that brings them all together. I want to show a perspective of soldiers’ children I haven’t seen portrayed in fiction before while also writing about law enforcement and therapy dogs. The basic theme is very similar to O to be Like Thee— there is healing, and sometimes failure only means you didn’t fail—but the plot is completely different. My heart is still very much in O to be Like Thee, but I’m starting to fall in love with Tattered Wings, and I hope it can be comparable someday.
11. Do you think being a military kid affects your writing process in any way?
Hmm...well, I hope my stories read authentically military-wise, even with creative license...does that count? My stories are chock-full of Army terms and acronyms that I sometimes wonder if anyone will understand. Physically writing the story...probably, but I don’t know if I could tell you how.
12. Who do you hope to reach with your stories? Soldiers, civilians, both?
I’ve asked myself this sometimes... Both. Definitely both. I pray I write characters that soldiers can relate to and thus are willing to listen to. It’s hard, but there is hope. I pray that soldiers see that in my characters’ lives. Likewise, I also pray that I open the eyes of those who otherwise have no experience with the military—help them to understand what thousands of soldiers go through, give them a reason to remember and honor, show them why it’s worth respecting.
Thank you, so much, Kassie for doing this interview with me! And thank you to all the Military kids (Whether you’re still in or out, you are always a military kid!) for your sacrifice and service to our Great Nation, The United States of America! You are loved and appreciated!💜
Until Next Time,
Hello and welcome back to Life of Heritage Corner! It’s hard to believe February is already over! Today, I’d like to share with you some of my February favorites. Let’s Dive in!
My February Favorites…
Event: Going ice skating with my family for the very first time! Banged up my elbow and my knee, but it was still an exciting experience!
Song: I have been listening to a lot of Patch the Pirate this month! I must say my favorite song so far is God of Wonders from Time Twisters (2017). It covers the wonders of God from the Bible, like Creation, The Flood, Egypt’s Plagues and the Lions’ Den to name a few. The orchestration adds so much to the song and truly allows you to get lost in the Greatness of our God!
Snack: Homemade Chocolate Chip Cookies! We love these and my siblings enjoy making them with me when they can. Their favorite part is sifting the flour. (I like that part too 😉)
Verse: Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. (Hosea 6:1, King James Bible) I love Jude 22, but this month, this verse really stood out to me. It was the heading verse from a devotional book, Revival Time by John Goetsch and Nathan Birt. (It’s a great book, btw!) It’s so encouraging to know that God is standing by, ready to forgive when we fail Him, ready to heal our wounds and get us back on the right path. And what a joy to know that this promise holds true for our nation as well! We can have revival, if only the people of God will humble ourselves, and pray, seeking His face and turn from our wicked ways! There is hope! (II Chronicles 7:14)
Book of the Month: The Swamp Fox of the Revolution by Stewart H. Holbrook. It was a very interesting book about one of my favorite Patriot Heroes! I came across it at our local library, and loving older books, I had to check it out 😉 So glad I did!
Now, for those of you who don’t know, my family represents the Fundamental Broadcasting Network (FBN Radio). We are an Independent Baptist ministry out of Grace Baptist Church in Newport, N.C. (click here to see our website!) We have over 40 stations around the country, in addition to 12 overseas stations (including Bagdad, Iraq)! By way of app and Internet, we have heard from 225 countries and territories to date! There are still about 13 places we haven’t been able to reach yet, but we are praying that will change soon.
Why am I telling you this?
Well, I don’t know the names of all the countries we haven’t reached, but I do know one of them: North Korea. Currently, it is impossible to reach them with FBN, because they have a closed server that is closely monitored.
I want to encourage you to join me in praying for this nation to be reached with the Gospel of Jesus Christ, if not through FBN (which would be great!), then through some other outlet. This has been a burden on my heart for the last couple of years. They need the gospel and the Christians in their country need encouragement. Will you pray for them today?
I have completed my physical round of edits and am currently making all those changes on my digital copy! It’s coming together quite nicely, and I appreciate your prayers and encouragement! It means a lot to me! Hopefully, I’ll be able to start team-edits with my mom this month!
A Book I am Anticipating for March:
The Hiding Place by Corrie ten Boom. I know…I love WWII and it’s embarrassing to say I have yet to read this book. But I finally have decided to read it. I know it’s going to be a hard read, but I look forward to hearing Corrie and Betsie’s story in full. (Today is the 75th Anniversary of their arrest.)
And Now for your Story Prompts!
I’ll see you next month! God Bless!
Time for a history post! Y’all, today is a day you might not know is important. But it is…it is so important. Unless you are a WWII buff/enthusiast, you’ve probably never heard of The White Rose Resistance group. I know a gentleman from our church whose mother was German and he hadn’t heard of them, even though WWII is his favorite time period to study. He’s taught me most of what I know about the period. Well, today is the 76th anniversary of the death of three members of the White Rose Resistance group. And I am going to share with you 10 random facts about these amazing young people…
1. Unlike most resistance groups of WWII, The White Rose was a non-violent, intellectual resistance. This means that rather than sabotaging Nazi plans, assassinating the bad guys or going out to rescue people, they appealed to the public to turn on Hitler’s regime by writing pamphlets. They appealed to people’s morality, duty and loyalty to stand against the Nazis in any way they could. Had their resistance lasted longer, I have no doubt they eventually would have turned to rescuing internees, directly or indirectly.
2. The main members of The White Rose were: Hans and Sophie Scholl (Brother and sister), Christoph Probst, Alexander Schmorell, Willi Graf and Kurt Huber.
3. They published 5 leaflets, but 6 were written in all. Even though the papers were destroyed by the SS (Nazi Secret Police), some of the papers were smuggled to England, where they were mass-produced and spread throughout Germany, even after many of the resistance members had been executed.
4. Sophie is the indirect reason she and Hans were arrested. She pushed a stack of the papers off the ledge of their collage balcony, showering papers on the students walking below. The Janitor figured out who was responsible and everything fell apart from there.
5. Christoph was a married man with three children. His wife was ill at the time of his death. They tried to get him off the hook by claiming he had what we now call PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), since he had indeed been a soldier and did suffer some lasting mental strain as a result.
6.And speaking of being a soldier, Hans Scholl also served in the German Army prior to becoming a resister.
7. Christoph, Hans and Sophie were all medical students! Y’all know I liked that aspect of their story!
8. The man who judged them, Roland Freisler, was known for holding staged trials. He always decided on the fate of the victim prior to the trial, giving them no chance of escaping his sentence. Freisler died almost two years later on February 3rd, 1945, when an American pilot bombed his courtroom.
9. Hans, Sophie and Christoph were sentenced to die by way of the guillotine, the very same day as the trial.
10. Just before being executed, Hans cried out, “Es Lebe Die Freiheit!” (Long Live Freedom!) May this always be the battle cry of those Resisting evil.
I do not know as much about these young people as I would like, but I intend to continue studying them. Take a moment today to remember the cause for which they fought and died. Thank God for His mercy in letting that cruel war end in Allied victory and for following it up with the founding of Israel (1947).
And David said, What have I now done? Is there not a cause?
1 Samuel 17:29
(King James Bible)
Until Next Time,
Es Lebe Die Freiheit!
Hello and welcome back! Today, I have another fun book review for you and oh! This book *eyes tearing up already* will hit you right in the heart. I just recently met this sweet author through the blog and I am so excited to share with you about her novel, O To Be Like Thee!
O To Be Like Thee
How Deep Love Runs
By Kassie Angle (Published 2018)
Wartime friendships are almost legendary. There’s nothing quite like the bond between soldiers who know their lives depend on each other.
That’s the thing, though. Your best friend’s life depends on you. That’s not always an easy responsibility.
And to make things worse, there’s that little blue-eyed boy in Texas who recognizes your uniform and not your face, and somehow his broken heart learns to love you…
Okay, so I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before or not, but I love the army and I love military medical units, regardless of branch. I love a novel about medics (I mean, Seth is one of my favorite characters from my books and he’s a doctor’s aide 😉). This book combines these passions and oh! I love it so much!
We follow the story of LT Corban “Corey” Schreiber, a medic stationed in Afghanistan and his relationship with a new friend, Mayson McKinley (Already, I love this guy! Mayson…kinda partial to that name even if the spelling is different…). I used to live near a military base and I have army in my family, so this story really hit home for me.
Kassie handled topics such as blaming one’s self for someone’s death, mild PTSD, grieving a loved one and how things change after deployment for a service member. And she did it very well! Having been raised on army bases across the globe, Kassie knows what she is talking about. And her writing style is to the point and heart wrenching. Few books actually make me cry. I can think of…five that made me cry and one of them was mine, so it doesn’t count, lol! This book made me cry several times. It’s so…real. Even though the story is from Corey’s Point of View (POV), I felt I could connect with him. She did something few books I’ve read about the military have done. She made Corey human, not some larger than life superhero who can handle anything. He had struggles. He had feelings. He wasn’t a robot, but a person.
While there is some blood mentioned in the story, and injuries discussed, nothing was exceedingly graphic. I would read it to my younger siblings, no problem.
I will not forget this story. It hit home for me on a deep level and brought me to an even stronger appreciation for our servicemen. I encourage you, click this link and order you a copy of O To Be Like Thee. It’s a 400+ page novel, so it may take a while to finish, but it is worth it. READ THIS!
…Well done, good and faithful servant; thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
(King James Bible)
Until Next Time,
Welcome to my fourth post of the year! I am so excited to be bringing you another installment of my Soldier Life series…the sixth in this series I found out. So for those who are unfamiliar with this series, I am compiling information that I came across while researching for The Battle for Heritage Series. I am not an expert on the War Between the States, but I thought these posts might be helpful to other authors researching the same time era.
With that out of the way, let’s see what life in the army was like for a private, the lowest ranking member of the army.
Most of the army is made up of privates, even today. They are the boots on the ground, the common soldier you know and love from novels and movies. Back in the old days, the private did not have any insignia on his uniform. And another thing about these fellows that I suppose is common knowledge is that the private never gave orders. He’s not over anyone, he’s at the bottom of the totem pole. But what exactly was expected of him? Let’s take a look.
Drill. If you’ve read any book on soldiering in any time period, I’m sure you’ve read about the incessant amount of drilling they did. This wasn’t just a mundane task they had to complete. This was life and death training. It also helped to fill time in the day that otherwise would have left the men idle…and more prone to get into trouble.
KP. Ah, yes, Kitchen Patrol. While this is more of the WWII name for the job, soldiers did take turns helping the army cooks. Peeling potatoes (when they had them) was one of their jobs, as was washing dishes, stirring pots, serving food and dumping food waste., They would have to do anything food related when their turn came around.
Policing the Grounds. Just as today, this task had to do with keeping their living quarters neat and clean. Clearing debris away from the walking paths, organizing their gear, stacking the wood piles neatly, it all had to do with keeping things tidied up.
Horse Duty. Even if they didn’t serve in the Cavalry, their unit had horses for pulling supply wagons, riding dispatches, and transporting officers. So, the privates would feed the horses, clean up after them and if needed, make sure they had been exercised for the day. Grooming needed to be kept up as well to insure the horses’ health and appearance.
Guard Duty. There were two types of guard duty. The first was what you would expect from the name, guarding prisoners, both enemy and fellow soldiers who had disobeyed some military rule. The other was known as Picket Duty, which simply meant they were guarding the outskirts of the camp from intruders.
Camp Duties. This could be anything and everything. Chopping wood, digging latrines and trenches, delivering messages from the officers, hauling water, doing laundry, shooting game/butchering…you name it!
Drummers and buglers as a rule were privates as well, but I can’t say dogmatically that they all had this rank. I would have to look into that a little deeper.
Privates also helped in the hospitals. They often helped hold a soldier down during surgery, volunteered to help the doctors when there was a shortage of nurses and helped remove the wounded from the battlefield. (They weren’t the only ones to do this, but since there were more privates than the other ranks, they were the majority of the ones gathering the wounded.) They also served on burial detail.
Hope this was helpful! I’ll see you next week with a writerly post that I can’t wait to share with you!
Christian. American. Southern. Author.