Saint Andrew Bay Quilters' Guild

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Quilt of Valor Presentation
By Beverly Pierzchala


Early in December SABQG received a message via our website from Linda Fentriss, Quilt of Valor Coordinator for Florida.  She was asking us to deliver a quilt to a lady who was to retire from the Air Force and was stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base.  Edyth asked me if I would do the presentation and I agreed.
So on Friday, December 13, 2013 my husband and I traveled to Tyndall and went to Chapel 2 for the Retirement Ceremony for Tech Sgt Elizabeth Man.  The first thing that I noticed about Elizabeth was that she had a great big smile and she kept it on throughout the ceremony.  Many good remarks were made regarding Elizabeth’s service in the Air Force.  But then Elizabeth made some remarks of her own and I was floored.
Elizabeth was born in India.  She was abandoned by her mother and placed in a home to work as a servant.  This situation was very poor.  Elizabeth said that she had very little to eat and one day she stole something to eat and was caught and beaten.  She then ran away and became a street child of Calcutta.  One day a very kind lady who was dressed in a long white dress with blue trim found her, took her by the hand and told her she would find her a good place to live.  She went to an orphanage where she was treated better.  It was only later when she was older did she learn that the kind lady who found her was Mother Teresa.
Another kind lady came to the orphanage and adopted her.  This lady was an American so Elizabeth came to live in the States.  When Elizabeth finished school she decided that she wanted to be a nurse.  She talked to the Army recruiter but the Army program was filled.  She talked to other recruiters and finally selected the Air Force.  She became a Chaplain Assistant and continued in that role throughout her career.  Elizabeth made two tours of duty in Iraq and one in Afghanistan.  She encountered men and women in many difficult situations and helped talk through their fears, loneliness and even worked with someone who was threatening suicide.  Elizabeth’s warmth and strength helped herself and others survive through war. 
Following retirement from the Air Force Elizabeth is again going to pursue her goal of becoming a nurse. She will make a great nurse.
It was indeed an honor on my part to be able to present to Elizabeth her Quilt of Valor.
For information about Quilt of Valor Foundation go to http://www.qovf.org

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