Remembering Heroes of America

Roughrider Honor Flight

September 10th and 11th I will be joining my Papa Wally on the Roughrider Honor Flight! I can’t even begin to express how filled with pride I am to be traveling to Washington DC with my Papa and many other men and women like him who served our country. What will we be doing with only 36 hours in D.C.? At first I didn’t know if we could get that much done, but they have an itinerary that doesn’t waste a minute. It is filled!

Friday, September 10th: We will get to the airport by 6:30am and leave by 8:30am.  The plane is full and we have others flying out of other cities that will be joining us in Washington DC. We will then arrive at Dulles International Airport in Washington DC by 12:30pm. After getting off the plane, we will go to our buses. Thank you Haymarket Transportation! ^_^  Papa and I are on the Blue Bus!

We will get lunch on the bus and at 1:45pm will arrive at Lincoln, Vietnam and Korean Memorials.  Having an hour and a half here, we will begin a Washington DC Driving Tour at 3:15pm.  Around 4:30 we will arrive at the hotel.  The name of the hotel is escaping me right now, but it is supposed to be a really lovely hotel.  A reception will be held from 6:00 to 7:00pm and dinner will be served afterwards.  The Roughrider Honor Team is going to hold a program at 7:30pm, where I imagine we will honor these men and women both in the room and those whose memorials we have visited or will be visiting tomorrow.  Papa and I will then be able to go around visiting others and gathering history in the best way possible – thru stories.  I do hope Papa will share his stories as well.

Saturday, September 11th: At 6:30 to 7:30am breakfast will be served and is supposed to be one of the finest breakfast services around, or so I’ve heard. ^_^  We will need to gather energy for the next couple hours of venturing they have in store for us.  We will board the buses at 7:45am, hoping to beat traffic and some heat.  We will arrive at the WWII Memorial by 8:15am.  At the WWII Memorial we will be taking a group picture!  They gave us all these wonderful hats and we will all have matching jackets they’re to give us when we arrive at the airport on Friday.  It’ll be a precious photo, at least I think so. 

At 10:15am we will visit the Iwo Jima Memorial; then it is off to the Arlington National Cemetery Visitors Center at 11:00am to begin a tram tour.  I’m not entirely sure what that will be like, but it will be “moving” for sure.  At 1:20pm we will have lunch served, again on the bus, while also having the possibility to drive past or visit the following locations:

  • Pentagon
  • Jefferson Memorial
  • Capitol
  • White House
  • Fords Theatre
  • Washington Cathedral
  • Watergate Hotel
  • Air Force Memorial
  • FDR Memorial
  • 9/11 Memorial at the Pentagon
  • Embassy row
  • Navy Memorial
  • Air and Space Museum at Dulles


Then we bid farewell to Washington DC, arriving at Dulles International Airport by 5:00pm.  It will be a lot to get in but it will definitely be an experience of a lifetime.  I will be posting photos and stories from my trip so don’t forget to check back for them! Take care until then and please read some of my Papa’s history below! ^_^v


Wallace A. Erickson

Brief Military Biography

 I joined the United States Army on October 5, 1946, just out of high school.  I received my Basic Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky.  I was sent to Japan occupation in December of that year.  We spent the winter in tents in Osaka.  In the spring of 1947, I was transferred to Tokyo where I was assigned to an Engineer Battalion.  I spent my time supervising reconstruction projects such as a gas plant and a hotel.  When I arrived in Tokyo, there was not a house between Tokyo and Yokahama.  When I departed a year later, it was all built up.

On the way out of the discharge office, military personnel said if we wanted to, we could sign up for the Army Reserves, and a number of us did.  I had attended college for two years when I was called up and sent to Korea, assigned to the 24th Infantry Division.  I was assigned to a rifle platoon as a “machine gunner”, so I spent a year carrying this 30 caliber machine gun up and down and across Korea three times.  While in a fox hole on a mountaintop, I received my discharge from the Army Reserves, but the Army would not let me go home.  Spending a winter on the mountaintops in minus 10 to minus 40 degrees with only a summer sleeping bag was not very comfortable!

I crossed the 38th parallel three times back and forth.  I skipped my time off for R&R to Japan so I could go home earlier.  I got out of Korea just before “Pork Chop Hill” where my outfit took heavy casualties.

After graduating from the UND, I purchased a Standard Oil Service Station in ND.  I operated the station for 42 years until retirement.  I now reside in ND.  I have 3 children, 7 grandchildren, and 1 great granddaughter.


Making the Grade…

My JEM & 2nd Grade:

My lovely daughter, JEM, started school today.  She woke up bright-eyed and full of excitement.  After she got ready & ate breakfast, we grabbed a jacket and headed out the door.  We got to school early enough so we could buy lunch and milk tickets and take some pictures with JEM and her teacher & her cute outfit! ^_^  Of course when I got my camera out it was dead! Luckily I had my phone! Thank you Jesus!

Here are some precious memories I was able to capture thanks to my Palm Treo! – Sorry quality isn’t the best, but it’s better than not having any, right?  Enjoy!



This & then some…

Enjoy memories? Great! So do I! hehe

Here are some pictures from this past Christmas…taekwondo…basketball games….Vegas trip….& much, much more!

Enjoy & hope you don’t mind the randomness of this post, but if you really kno me -then you’ll be used to it! ^_^

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♥ Always

My Daddy’s B-day fotos!!! ^_^

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Here’s a little glimpse of how we celebrated my dad’s birthday this year. The weather was odd that day, but that was okay. We still had an awesome time! Happy Birthday Dad!


Fotos from My Little Brother’s B-day!!!

Sometimes my family throws a little party for my brother -hehe- sometimes…

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This year my brother was turning 17! He’s still not afraid to embrace his childhood tho! I luv you little bro! You had the rockinest bday! ^_^

♥ Always

4th of July pixels

Every 4th of July – well maybe not every 4th, but it sure seems like it’s been this way 4ever (haha)- Mona & my grandma buy us all our “4th of July Outfits” and we try to capture the moment! See if you can spot it. -lol-

I hope your 4th was a fun & ER free as ours was. ^_^v

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♥ Always

Lil Alma

 To a wonderful woman! I’m pretty sure ever person that knows her would describe her as anywhere from crazy, fun, always busy, full of endless energy, caring, bestest grandma ever, big hearted, a woman of faith, loving, rockin mum, loud, great sister, bossy (but in a good way-haha), wise, compassionate, a true friend, one hot mama!, and so many other fabulous words.

She doesn’t always get things right, but she’s never afraid to do things, to take a chance on people, and for these and many, many more reasons, she is loved so much! I thought I’d share some of the best crazy-touching memories I have of my mum cuz today is her birthday!!! Happy Birthday Mum!!! I lo♥e you lots!

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Mum doesn’t have the best sense of direction, but she doesn’t care. Once, altho I’m sure it’s happened more than that, she was driving some of my friends and me home from an out of town basketball game. Well she ended up driving south, rather than north, all the way til we hit the state line! haha It was like “Oops!” and that was all that really could be said, as she turned around, heading in the right direction this time. haha

Another memory I have of her is one I only have becuz it has been told so many times. My mum was driving my sister and I to the babysitters, but as usual we were late and mum was being distracted by two little ones not sitting in their carseats. Mum turned around to demand we get in our seats. As she did this a police car spotted her. She pulled over and the cop walked up to her window. She explained to him that she was trying to get up back in our carseats. The office turned his attention to the little girls in the back and said, “You’d better get back in your carseats.” And apparently I decided to finish his sentence with “Or I’ll spank your butt!” The cop tried not to laugh or smile -becuz cops are supposed to come across scary and mean (hehe). Mum ended up getting a warning that day. Haha I know the only reason I said that was due to the fact that Mum had just used that same threat. lol Good one mum! ^_^

Some memories I’ve learned over the years of my mum have been hilarious! My mum talked my Grandma Rainy into switching seats in the car while they were going 70 mph! Or when my mum was allowing her friend to demonstrate how to properly curl one’s lashes. Her friend slipped and yanked out all her lashes (okay it’s funny, but at the same time really sounds like it hurt).  A more recent memory is when mum proudly wore a shirt with baby bottle nipples all over it for her 50th birthday party. haha

Thanks mum for all you have done, whether crazy or sweet, you are truly a woman we all hope to be more like. I love you & thank you so much for all that you have done, for all you are doing, and for all that you will do!

♥ Always

PS – Thanks sooooo much for the Keith Urban concert tickets! He was amazing and we had so much fun! You really are the best, mum!

If you have any memories you wish to share, feel free to do so! Love learning more about this amazing crazy woman! ^_^v

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