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Happy Holidays!  This year, I watched all the holiday movies by myself.  Gone are the days of mean ol’ Dad making my family watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” or “White Christmas” or “A Charlie Brown Christmas” and listen to me recite every single line before the movie characters say their lines.  I called it a family tradition – I was reminded it was cruel and unusual punishment.  Sigh.

Hersey Miyamura, a Medal of Honor recipient (Korean War), passed away a few weeks ago.  I’m sad, but I cherish the times I saw him and the late George Sakato (WWII Medal of Honor recipient) at the Pentagon.  One day, Tony Keiling, our office administrative officer, ran into my office, interrupted a meeting, and stammered, “Somebody from the Chairman’s office just called and said you needed to get over there!”  I asked him if I missed a meeting or something, and he said, “No…something about a “SAY- kay- toe” and Hersey candy or whatever, but you better get over there.”  I slapped my forehead and said, “Geez, Tony, it’s pronounced SAH-kah-toe, and they’re both Medal of Honor recipients!”  They were almost to the door of an adjacent room when they heard me panting upon arrival.  “We just wanted to say hi,” we quickly shook hands, and off they went!  The same routine happened a few more times over the years.  Please keep Hersey and his family in your thoughts and prayers.

Finally, be kind and safe as you share your holiday spirit with family and friends.  If you’re inclined, raise a glass, and send your holiday cheer to our service members and those in the foreign service who are away from family and friends at this time of year.  Trust me, they’ll feel it.  I always did.