I had the honor of meeting Sgt. Andrew Connolly one time. Jessie, Jason and Noah Waddell (pictured below) had the pleasure of being his relatives.
In the short time I knew Andrew, I knew him to be funny, handsome, caring, loyal, and very loving to his gal pal Jenny.
Jenny and Andrew's war and love story could really be made into a major box office hit. It goes a little something like this...
Boy meets girl in high school. Boy and girl fall in love. Boy serves country oversees in Egypt. Boy returns home. Boy is deployed to Iraq. Boy returns home. Boy and girl have a beautiful baby with a severe muscular disorder. Boy and girl get married. Boy gets diagnosed with cancer. Boy goes to D.C. to fight for funding for all paralyzed vets. Boy spends his last months of his short 28 years of life blogging to encourage everyone to do small acts of kindness. Boy builds handicapped accessible home. Boy becomes paralyzed. Boy gains angel wings. Boy leaves legacy.
Many activities take place throughout the year to honor the life and legacy of this wonderful Army vet, dad, husband, brother, uncle, neighbor and friend... Earlier this year, loved ones held a fundraiser to support other local veterans or people with paralysis. I donated a photo session to the silent auction and Jessie, Jason and Noah were the winning bidders. I was honored to do this session for them in memory of the great Sgt. Andrew Connolly.
Today is National Make a Difference Day and "Andrew Connolly Make a Difference Day." I know Andrew would want me to ask you, "What will you do to make a difference today?"
In addition to my photography business, I am a freelance writer. A few years ago, I had the opportunity to write a story for the magazine of Clarke University (where I came to know of Andrew through his gal Jenny who also studied there). You can read more about them in that article. This is another great read about how Andrew made a difference for vets. And, for those of you who don't know Jenny, she is happily remarried and lives with her and Andrew's boy Brody, her hubby Jimmy and their new baby also named Jimmy.