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Thank you

Date Posted: 2001-06-01

To the kind and good people of Okinawa:

I recently wrote a letter about my sonís plight to Japan Update. The response was overwhelming on both sides of the issue. I hope this will compel the military to reconsider certain protocols and procedures when it comes to dealing with family members of critically injured military people.

At the time of my first letter, I was very frustrated and angered by the treatment, and the lack of information that I had requested concerning my son's condition that was very slow in forthcoming. I also felt that I was not receiving assistance that should have been made available to my family.

I want everyone to understand that the circumstances surrounding my son's accident happened at a very fast pace, and it created an environment of confusion. When people were trying to react to the fast pace and, at the same time, preparing for steps towards getting my son to the next level, it caused a communication challenge to say the least. I feel that there are a lot of people who did the right things, and even if they made a few mistakes they weren't done because of lack of effort. I am still displeased with some of the decisions made by one colonel of the III FSSG and a few other high-ranking officers. I never intended to demean or show in bad light Marines who just follow orders and carry out a job that very few people will ever have the courage or fortitude to do. The calls and letters I received asking me to be their voice will be honored. I will do my best to work with the military in presenting our stories. I hope and pray that if we work together with the administrators of the Marine Corps, we will bring about a very positive change that will be fair to both sides. Please pray for me as I approach either the Commandant of the Marine Corps, or the U.S. Government.

I would like first of all to thank everyone who responded to my letter from both sides. By getting this feedback, I was able to see my Rocky's tragedy in its proper perspective. Thank you for all of your prayers, funds, food, hospitality, and smiles. You will never know how grateful the Escobedo family is for these newly found friendships.

I would like to thank Chief Warrant Officer Pietrowski, of the Marine Corps, for staying at my son's bedside right after his terrible accident. I would like to thank the Air Force Medivac Team who transported my son from Thailand to Okinawa and from Okinawa to San Diego.

Thank you to Captain Nixon, a.k.a " bless your bones", and to all of his wonderful chaplains who did everything humanly possible to help my family and myself, to Lt Colonel Bennette, of the Marine Corps, who helped my daughter in law when hse was finally informed about our struggle. To Colonel Booker thanks for everything, and to everyone who works at the Naval Hospital at Camp Lester, including Cpl Torres, Marine Corps liaison. To the Marines who wear the title of Marines, I tip my hat to you for your diligence and courage even in the face of superiors who might not be aware of their wrong decisions that could potentially impact lives throughout the entire Corps. I would encourage you to carry on and continue to raise the banner, highly trusting that these few bad apples who will not admit their mistakes will eventually be dealt with by justice.

A special thank you to Commander, Dr.Rowe, Lt. Brownsfield and both SSgt. Evansís, who represented the Marine Corps and Navy with diplomacy and caring but at no time compromising the guidelines.

And special thank you to God who spared Rocky's life and to all Chaplains, Christian churches and organizations who continually lift Rocky up to God. And all the glory be to God.

Thank you all, and may god bless all the beautiful people of Okinawa.

Frank Escobedo and family.
email: rocky

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