Capturing the memories of our lives

This is a quick video to help give you a feel for the evening’s events.

Is everybody Happy? H-A-P-P-Y

Last night we welcomed home our son the soldier and 1st Lieutenant after serving for the past 9 months in Afghanistan.

This is an incredible event for everyone on so many levels.  What was so cool was the number of decisive moments went up so dramatically.

Every knock at the door at home was cause for panic this past year, for fear of the worst. I am not sure, but I think this might have been about the most polar opposite to going to a funeral.

My step-son was smiling as big as I have ever seen him smile. My wife was so thrilled to get a genuine hug that surpassed all she had ever had before by him.

I saw many little boys dressed in their fatigues waiting for their daddy to come home. I think their dads could see how proud these boys were of their dads and their service for our country.

It was a visual event. I do not think any radio station could have done this justice.

It seems like many people came with their signs to be sure their soldier knew where to find them [so it was big] and how much they cared. I love this moment when this friend of our son tells him about her sign. I think you can see the pleasure in her face and body language about how she wanted to wear her emotions on her sleeve for this event.

What was different with all these hugs were the joy in each persons face for not just the other person, but the deep emotions they felt from their friendships. Here is my step-son Nelson give a bear hug to his friend from The Citadel James Harrell.

These moments were powerful to see where the emotions inside of folks were too much to contain and all their actions showed the deep affections people had for one another.

Social media is helping everyone share these moments with their friends. As we posted these photos to our social media accounts my wife Dorie is saying I cannot keep up with the comments. The likes were off the chart as compared to any other photos we have ever shared.

Here you can see Sarah Kohut Harrell, Dorie Griggs and Lynn Essert enjoying some of the photos and comments already Dorie is getting from friends from all over the world.

These are the times we want to capture and hold so dearly.

This is why I love being a photographer. My work is to capture people living life to their fullest and this is one of those big milestones we put on our the walls of our homes.

Always take your camera to events like these, they are too precious not to capture to remember forever. Also, remember how you present yourself can be very welcoming or you can put people off.