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Matthew Elijah Leary

Air Force son

Nov. 6, 2012 - 04:31PM   |   Last Updated: Nov. 6, 2012 - 04:31PM  |  
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To me, being born into the military was and is a blessing. I got to view the world from a child's eyes and understand the cultures of the world. My dad is an inspiration to me, my family and my friends. He served in the Air Force for 16 years; strong-willed and headstrong, he was never content with failure, and was dedicated enough to work no matter how much pain he was in. He inspires me to work as hard as possible every day.

While my dad served in the military, we moved to Japan, Idaho, England and Arizona. I made both personal and lifelong friendships which have so far have withstood the years we have been apart. My friends in England and I constantly talk to each other; I admire their interest in what I did without them. And in Arizona I have ties to people who are still moving around the world that are enjoying themselves and the blessings they have received. They are grateful for having me as a friend, and I am grateful for being the one person who gets to hear their stories.

Throughout those 16 years my dad worked tirelessly to support us children. He constantly did overtime, and yet he always had just enough time to entertain us with fun games and quirky jokes. He would always have a reason to laugh; he still does. His strength and love gave me enough courage to try to work my hardest to succeed in school, scouts and virtually all of my natural life.

I, my brother and sister are blessed to have been born into such a large group of friends and family. The military has offered me the greatest life I could have ever had; I learned many things from my life in the military. Such as the skills to survive in the wilderness (also partially taught by Boy Scouts) and how bonds between friends and co-workers can withstand both distance and time. However, my life in the military has almost come to an end. I will cherish the memories forever handed to me by both my dad and the military.

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