Coach Berenato's Trip for the Troops: Day 4
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I am so excited to write you about yesterday. It was a great day and one that I will never forget. I am happy to be on the computer, I am using the Chaplins,SFC Klaffka from Chambersburg computer, so I will be quick. Of course she is a Pennsylavinia girl!!!!
I have a roommate here and she has been sick. I have tried to help her with offers of tea, crackers etc. but she is more into sleeping. I did bring her back two gatorades and she was happy. We all went to the gym and worked out and they have a nice facility in a huge tent. They keep it clean and neat and have everything you would want. We went to the DFAC or chow hall and the best thing was the Cappucino. We mixed and mingled with the troops and it is just like home in the fact that some soilders are in a hurry and just need to grab and go!!!
Coach Berenato's Day 3
Coach Berenato's Day Two
Coach Berenato's Day One
Pitt's Berenato to visit U.S. troops overseas
We left and went to meet the Motor Pool. That was wonderful. Hot (130 degrees) and I was so lucky to meet two Pittsburgh soilders. The first, a Chalpin and Pitt graduate, Carl Phillips. he was just so excited and could not wait to tell his wife Deanna. He also wanted to give a shout out to Harvey Holsopple. Great guy!! The next man, 2 Lt. Mark Milligan was just so fired up. He lived in Pittsburgh until age 11 and has a Pitt basketball in his office and a Terrible Towel on his desk in his work unit. His uncle is the Dean of Pitts Dental School, Bert Milligan. We spoke forever and took photos and exchanged hugs, The operation they work on is amazing and we were able to get tours of the entire facility. Thanks to both of my Pittsburgh buddies. He wanted me to say hello to Nancy and Gary Grubich....so a big shout out to you both!
After a great time talking Pitt sports, we moved to relax and shower (again). We all decided to go to get Pizza for dinner and be amongst the soldiers. It was terrific and we learned so much. Wow, there is a lot going on here and someday I will reflect on this experience and not believe it really happened to me. I am so lucky and thankful to all the soldiers, from all over the world. This stop has Americans, British, Germans, Canadians etc...and again everyone is here for one common cause. Safety and to help underdeveloped nations make it on their own. Now more than ever, I believe in volenteerism. We all wondered to the computer center to try to check emails, but the lines were so long there was no way we could take time away from the troops to log on!! Again, thanks to my Pa girl for letting me use this computer. In the distance we could see a court so we wandered over to the basketball courts. It was just like home. Pickup games going on, winners have court and fouls being called when the defense didn't think they fouled!! Too funny! We really had great fellowship and spoke with soldiers from all over the United States.
The night ended with my first calls home and a call to Channel 4's Michelle Wright. How cool that we spoke on the phone. Thanks Michelle!! It was neat to know Andrew and Clare were going to the Steelers game (hope they won) and good to talk to Chrissy and Jack. Joey is taking stuff to college, so everything is normal at home and no one i has missed a beat! Again, thanks to Theresa Marie for putting my blog up!!! Orlando (Jacksonville State) and Duggar (VMI) and I went and sat outside until 3 AM and talked everything under the son. We often had a soldier come up and sit and chat with us. It was cooler (maybe 95 degrees) and we could see the stars and the moon. It helped that my family were looking at the same moon and I didn't feel so far away!!! We all walked back to our rooms and under the stars you heard planes etc, taking off. It is a never ending task and the action continues 24 hours a day! I took a long shower and thanked God for allowing me this opportunity to represent . I thank Pitt for giving me the support to be here and help boost morale of our troops. I thank my family because they are the most understanding loved ones anyone could ask for. Again the thought rings in my heart:
There's no place like Pitt.
Game on, ab
First Published August 15, 2009 11:26 pm