I wrote this poem for Christmas Eve 1993 while assigned to US Forces Korea (USFK), Yongsan Garrison, Seoul, Korea. I drove around Christmas Eve and put it under the door of soldiers assigned to USFK.Lt. Col. Bruce Lovely, USAF
Lt. Col. Bruce Lovely was kind enough to get in touch with me last year after reading his poem on this site and offered to send me the original version, as he wrote it and I am proud to post it above ... Joy 12/05/02
Another version of this is a song, the result of collaboration between Ellen Stout, and her late father, Father Ted Berndt. In 2003, Ellen was a radio personality at WLTQ in Milwaukee, WI. During the holiday season that year, she had received a copy of the poem written in 1986 by Lance Corporal James M. Schmidt from a listener. She shared it with her Dad. Together, with her Dad narrating and Ellen producing, they created the song heard each Christmas season.
Her dad was 81 years old at the time; a WWII Marine Corps veteran, a Charismatic Episcopal Priest and battling pancreatic cancer. He lost his battle just 3 months after recording the song. All he ever wanted to do was, in his words, "touch lives and make a difference." Before he passed, he felt he had.
You can hear the song, download a copy and even "meet" Father Ted because a video of his final interview with a local TV station where he relayed why this project meant so much to him.
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© Joyce Mascolino December 1999