Aleqm5jl6ighibjgzaoza9jnsgmrwks9g I’ve attended political events where MCain has held his hand up and without mentioning it I’ve noticed that he was wearing a veteran’s bracelet. But, now during the first debate on Friday, I have to think why Obama has decided to wear one.

Of course you guys are smart enough to know why he is wearing it and mainly for the fact to counter the statements he knew McCain was going to say about the one he was wearing during the debate.

bHowever, ask any vet about their bracelet they wear and I promise you, all of them either know the service member or at a minimum know the full story behind it and for the love of God, they know his name.

Plain and simple, if you’re going to play the “I’ve got a bracelet too” game, your better freaking know the warriors name behind it and so help all that is holy you better not let us catch you not wearing it now. Semper

From the Associated Press

Soldier’s mother ‘ecstatic’ about Obama’s bracelet

MILWAUKEE (AP) — The mother of a Wisconsin soldier who died in Iraq says she was "ecstatic" when Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama mentioned during Friday’s debate the bracelet she gave him in honor of her son.

Tracy Jopek of Merrill told The Associated Press on Sunday she was honored that Obama remembered Sgt. Ryan David Jopek, who was killed in 2006 by a roadside bomb.

Jopek criticized Internet reports suggesting Obama, D-Ill., exploited her son for political purposes.

"I don’t understand how people can take that and turn it into some garbage on the Internet," she said.

Jopek acknowledged e-mailing the Obama campaign in February asking that the presidential candidate not mention her son in speeches or debates. But she said Obama’s mention on Friday was appropriate because he was responding after Sen. John McCain, the Republican nominee, said a soldier’s mother gave him a bracelet.

"I’ve got a bracelet, too, from Sergeant — from the mother of Sergeant Ryan David Jopek, given to me in Green Bay," Obama said during the debate. "She asked me, ‘Can you please make sure another mother is not going through what I’m going through?’ No U.S. soldier ever dies in vain because they’re carrying out the missions of their commander in chief. And we honor all the service that they’ve provided."

Jopek says Obama’s comment rightfully suggested there’s more than one viewpoint on the war.

She wouldn’t directly say whether she wanted Obama to refrain from mentioning the bracelet again, but said she hopes the issue will just go away.

"I think these bracelets should be looked upon as an honor that both candidates wear them to respect the troops," Jopek said. "My request to both of them is that they honor the troops by lifting the conversation to the issues, and that they continue to live up to the standards our military deserves."


  1. I have a bracelet too.
    It says
    Thomas Barry Mitchell May 22, 1968.
    He was shot down over Cambodia and finally in 1980 was declared KIA.
    My son is named after him

  2. Strange how they didn’t mention the sgt’s dad in this story, who said he didn’t want Obama wearing the bracelet or mentioning his son in the speeches. The parents are divorced, so (apparently) suddenly the dad’s feelings in the matter are non-existent or irrelevant. Either way,whether they wanted it to be worn or not, Obama sounded like a 3rd grader when he brought it up.

  3. I hope you don’t mind me asking, but why do you wear Thomas Barry Mitchell’s bracelet. I ask in all respect. I believe everyone has a story and that everyone’s story is important.
    I wonder if Obama really knows the story behind his bracelet.
    Many of the current veterans I know get tatoos – – or carry other momentos of friends or soldiers/marines they lost. A Marine I dated last year has saved the news paper clippings and memorial programs from funerals of the Marines he knew who lost their lives. He keeps them with the jagged piece of metal from the humvee that had been removed from his leg after an IED explosion.

  4. Hi Major Pain,
    This is the first time I have felt the need to comment to you directly. I have been keeping a watchful eye, and a great many prayers, in your direction for a long time now. Our shared friend that luvs “Popcorn” has seen to that. I too wear a bracelet, though unlike Mr. Obama, mine actually means something to me. I have worn mine for over 30 years (I’ve even had to have it remade twice due to it breaking.) mine says “Capt. John T. West USAF 02 Jan 70 Laos”. It was given to me by my Uncle after we buried his son Davey who was KIA in Vietnam. When he gave it to me he said ” Our Davey is home now. You need to wear this until this young man comes home too.” I’ve had masses said, and prayers sent, for Captain West as long as I’ve been an adult. Somehow I sincerely doubt that Mr. Obama will even utter a prayer for Sergeant Jopek. It is just so sad that a Mother’s grief could cause her to do something that her beautiful child would find so offensive.
    Be Blessed & stay safe!

  5. I wear Cpt Thomas Mitchells bracelet because he has never come home and to remind me daily of the sacrifices the men, women and families have and do make to keep us free.
    His wife gave it to me. She was my next door neighbour. We watched and prayed that he would be in the group released from Hanoi that night in 1973. Not to be.
    I had the honour of meeting several of those men who were POW’s in North Vietnam. Truely humble Heros.

  6. I don’t have a bracelet. I write letters of condolences to all the KIA Marine families in my state, though, and so those names are etched in my memory. It’s the least I can do. I don’t want to ever forget any of our Heroes who have paid the ultimate price, but I’m not it in for show like bo is.

  7. I think the way Obama led into it was kinda lame, “I’ve got a bracelet too!” but I don’t think McCain should have brought his up in the first place as if he had something “over” Obama because it forced Obama to say, “Well, me too!”
    You make it sound like Obama just put his on like jewelry for the debate but he’s been wearing it for a long time and doesn’t go around waving it or talking about it, just like McCain doesn’t either.
    And people who assume Obama’s bracelet doesn’t mean anything to him are disgusting. Do they really think the mother would give the bracelet to someone she thought wouldn’t give a crap about it? Just because someone never served in the military doesn’t mean they don’t care about us.

  8. Akino,
    First, thank you for your service. Second, I’ve seen pics of O at rallies, in shirt sleeves and never seen the bracelet. I’ve seen the watch on his left wrist, never seen the bracelet on his right wrist. Not saying it wasn’t there on occasion, just that I’ve never caught a pic of it on his wrist.

  9. I was a child of the Vietnam era, it started a year or two before I was born. I grew up hearing the news of it every day of my childhood. It was always there, imprinted, from the time I could remember until I was just hitting my teen years. When it was over, in 1973, a very special person moved into my neighborhood. A Navy pilot & P.O.W. of 7 & 1/2 years, Edward A. Davis, with his wife Elaine. They had married right before he was sent to Vietnam. When he was shot down, his family did not know if he was alive or dead for about 6 years, then the Vietnamese finally allowed some cameras in the prison camps. He was recognized. It was still a couple more years before he was released & came home. I remember he had a box of P.O.W. bracelets in his house, that people sent him after he returned. He gave my brothers & me one each–and put one on himself. He never took it off as far as I know, because it was a different Ed Davis, & he said he would wear it until that Ed came home, too. He was in my town enough years for me to be one of his first child’s baby sitters and to give me an interview for my high school history class, before new orders sent him to Pennsylvania. Lives go on, people drift in & out of touch, and our families began to only see each other at weddings & funerals; although the thought, the presence, is always there–not forgotten. Ed died in November 9,2006, not quite 2 years ago, and buried in Arlington National Cemetery last May ’07. I went. It was an experience hard to describe. I was humbled to be in the presence of many of his fellow P.O.W.s, several of whom threw a nickel beside his casket. Over the years since Ed gave that bracelet to me, I take it out whenever I have the audacity to think I’m going through tough times & feel sorry for myself, and I think of him. What he went through. What Elaine & the rest of his family went through. Then I do my best to kick my own self in the ass, shrug it off, get moving & deal with it. That bracelet is one of the first things I’d save, in a fire.
    I acknowledge the fact that while I am not tough enough to be a Marine, I can be of help in other ways, and support you all serving in any way I can & will continue to do so. I fully appreciate that you all are doing something that I could not. (Although I have to admit to a strong non-constructive desire to douse some Code Pinkies with water balloons, recently…I refrained & kept going;)

  10. I am Captain Thomas Mitchell’s stepsister. We grew up together from the time we were little kids. Mitch was flying a C-130 on a flare dropping mission at the time of hs loss. Thanks to the tireless efforts of our military, the crash site was discovered in North Vietnam, just over the border with Laos, in 2000. Even after all these years, there was a large impact crater clearly visible and an eye-witness who saw the plane going down, on fire. Recovery teams have visited the remote site several times, conducted extensive excavations, and recovered remains. In 2009 the Air Force announced that they had completed identification of remains. All identified remains are being interred individually with full military honors, and some of those ceremonies have already taken place. Unidentified remains, including Mitch’s remains, will be interred together at Arlington some time this summer, 2010.
    He’s not missing any more.

  11. This is for J.A.Fitzpatrick regarding your post dated 1/23/2010.
    I am so sorry for your loss, but I want you to know I proudly wore my POW/MIA bracelet bearing the name of Capt. Thomas Mitchell for years and prayed for his safe return.I have moved many times over the years and have always placed the bracelet in a special place in my home(s).
    I have just discovered that his remains were buried in Arlington Cemetery June 10th of last year. I am so sorry for your family’s loss but pleased that he made it back home.
    I live in Florida, but I do visit DC frequently. In fact I was there in September of last year and would have been honored to visit Capt. Mitchell’s final resting place if I had known. Could you let me know the exact location of the burial site in Arlington, or how the headstone reads? I would like to pay my respects.

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