A Perfect Bahrain Meet and Greet Moment
And Some Strong “Armed” Forces Fitness With David
Ok, just one more..cropped ;)
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US Army Central Posts new Tour Vid!!
Oh my wow!!! This snippet at the beginning is David singing “Hey Brother!” (I’m pretty sure) Great song by Avicii mentioned to be covered by David in one of his last military tour shows! Would love to hear more!
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David Tweets ~”Hello Djabouti”
Soon after David tweeted his “hello” yesterday, Mary Lou posted the Middle East (tour stop) map updated showing their new stop in Africa to the west!
So what exactly is meant by Containerized Living Units otherwise known as (CLUs~pronounced Clues)?: At first glance the word and photo reminded me of a sardine can, and my mental image wasn’t too far off.
Containerized Housing Unit, usually abbreviated as CHU (and sometimes called Containerized Living Unit or CLU) is the name given to an ISO shipping container pre-fabricated into a living quarters. Such containers can be transported by container ships, railroad cars, planes, and trucks that are capable of transporting intermodal freight transport cargo.
Container Housing units are related to the site and land occupied during a certain amount of time by the need of water supply and excavation, electricity, telecommunications, etc. Plug-in city is a concept that is developing as more units capable of moving by intermodal means are brought up to the market. Local site is thus of most importance on correct container housing units use. An example of CLU housing is at the Operation Enduring Freedom – Horn of Africa base (Camp Lemonnier) in Djibouti.
Modular shipping containers are typically referred to as isotainers. In some military applications, the slang terms “Combat Housing Unit” or “cans” has also gained acceptance.
First developed by Malcom McLean to transport cargo, freight containers withstand lots of abuse. Freight Container Housing is becoming more and more popular. Shipping container architecture is a form of architecture using steel intermodal containers (shipping containers) as structural element.
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Dean Kaelin Updates from Djibouti!
We flew through the night and arrived at Addis Ababa at 6am. We wound our way through the airport and found our connection to Djibuti. I was quite surprised that it was actually slightly chilly in Addis. It was also rainy. I was expecting very hot. Everything was really green there, especially after the desert of Bahrain, Kuwait and Afghanistan we have been in for the past 2 weeks. Walking through the airport reminded me of my mission, we were pretty much the only white guys in the airport I think! Haha
We got to Djibouti and they charged us each $60 for a 2 day visa to get into the country. Rip off! We finally got through all that hassle and got picked up by the entertainment support team and driven to the base.
This is probably my least favorite base of any we have gone to. I was expecting something more like Addis, but it is more like Kuwait; hot and sandy, but kind of more junky. Our housing is literally metal containers they have built rooms in. If Bagram was bad college dorms, these are a step down from that. The mattress is pretty much old springs. Today was a rest day since our flight out of Kuwait left at 2:45am. David said he got down on the floor to do some exercises after lunch and he ended up falling asleep right on the hard floor. Haha. We all slept at least a little this afternoon since we were pretty much up all night.
On a good note, we were able to meet with members of the branch here and do a little fireside with them. It is always a nice experience to have some one on one time with the members of the church in these bases.
Dean also posted a (let’s just say) interesting page Bathroom Rules ! Oh my! So a shower in the toilet is even a conceived possibility? ummm ok.
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An Earlier blog from Dean yesterday
**Below is an excerpt from Dean’s blog about a soldier who had seen David’s live chat! ~ and to read the entire blog, CLICK HERE where you’ll also find a few more pics.
There was a great story from a soldier named Lowery from California. Two weeks ago he saw David Archuleta’s “Face to Face” interview that he did for the LDS church’s Young Men and Young Women. After watching it he was so touched that he prayed that he would one day be able to meet David Archuleta in person. He found out just over a week later that David was coming to Camp Patriot where he was deployed. He has served in Iraq and Afghanistan and had never been at a base where performers ever came and did a show. He was so amazed that he was in this small camp that usually doesn’t get entertainment and was able to hear David and meet him in person. Our program really touched him and meant so much to him. It is always interesting that we have so many “amazing coincidences” in the church!
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US Troops Tour – Bagram, Afghanistan, Return to Kuwait, Addis Ababa & Djibouti, Africa
Jason Hewlett “the entertainer” as he is called on his website, could very easily also be called “novelist or storyteller extraordinaire.” His blog yesterday was inspiring, informative, comical, and incredibly captivating for the entire one plus hour it took me to read through. I’m afraid if I attempt to post his entire blog here in what is already a fairly large post, I may crash the site.BE sure to head over to Jason’s website to read the ENTIRE BLOG.
Instead, I’ll post a few of my favorite excerpts from the blog along with many of his super pics!
Near the end of the show we learn of a young soldier who just welcomed his son to the world today via SKYPE with his wife. A new DAD. His first child is born and he’s over here, serving our Country. Afterward, as we took pictures and told him how awesome he was, tears filled his eyes as he said, “I’ve been a little bummed today to miss being there for my son’s birth, but this show filled me with gratitude that I can be here to protect my family and know I’m in the right place. This is the happiest day of my life!” Such a wonderful guy, person, and now, Dad.
…They didn’t even have a venue for a show but created one for us, building a stage out of metal beams and a giant gym mat that melted as it stuck to our shoes. It was all they had and they gave their all. It was the coolest stage I’ve ever seen built or conceived, so awesome. And they were so proud of it, and should have been. Seated all throughout the hall we gave away our traditional gifts: David Archuleta CD’s, Jason Hewlett DVD’s, Dan Clark’s hats he had made for the tour, and I pulled out some of my items I brought special for a day like this: Baby Wipes, Gum, Skittles, Jolly Ranchers, Mints individually wrapped. By the time the bags returned they appeared to have been dipped in a piranha tank, they had raided these treats, and I was so grateful they liked them. Some of these guys sorely needed the wipes, apparently at this base showers are a once every 3 days experience due to the extreme water shortage, and on some of the special ops guys (bearded so they can mingle with civilians outside the gates) you could tell they hadn’t showered in weeks. But everyone keeps smiling, doing their jobs, knowing what they do is bigger than themselves and for the greatest good. So cool.
As we take off, I’m filming the whole thing out the window as best as I can with my GoPro. Helmets on, Dean to my right, David and Dan across from us without helmets, we are enjoying the peaceful views of the mountains as we cruise to ARIBORNE FOB. All of a sudden – ENEMY FIRE! The machine guys start firing toward the mountain – RAT-TAT-TAT-TAT-RAT-TAT-TAT! Chinook jerks to the right as we drop, more shots fired – RAT-TAT-TAT-TAT-RAT-TAT-TAT! Swoops to the left, more shots fired – RAT-TAT-TAT-TAT-TAT.
Huge drop like you’ve just reached the top of a rollercoaster and the gut sinking feeling of the descent, we are headed straight down into the mountain! I see David, grabbing for his helmet, everyone in a stunned panic, holding their hands to their ears or grabbing anything they can, the soldier on the back hanging out the opening is sliding along the edge, freakiest and most exciting thing I’ve ever experienced. Once the craziness subsided I was the only one laughing, everyone else looked a bit shell shocked, but I knew that if we went down it would make for the coolest way to die, and so, alive, I had to laugh.
…We don’t comprehend our own greatness. The reason is that we live with it. Often it has to be pointed out to us time and time again for us to finally grasp that we have something significant to offer, that we are incredible even when we just do what we do naturally. God sent us here to discover how to harness this power, this ability, that only YOU can do for those around you. It is your Signature Move, the way in which YOU bless the world as only YOU can. And as I go from corporate event to corporate event, and now from one country to the next, entertaining the Troops, I realize more powerfully than ever the value of this message that I bring, which is: You have talents I don’t have, and I have talents you don’t want! J We are ALL gifted in our own ways, and to share the light, to spread the love, to give back where so often we only consume.
Flying above the Afghan sky, the screaming sound of a chopper overhead, surrounded by bright red webbing and ARMY green walls, buckled safe in my little seat, I looked admiringly at each person there:
The Pilots – The only way we get from here to there, safely, the most important people on the aircraft no matter what anyone else says or thinks!
The Gunners and Spotters – The only way the pilots can focus on their job and do it well, knowing they have their backs covered by experienced, hawk-eyed machine gun wielding boys who keep all of us safe and literally come to our aid in any issue.
The MWR Team of Elissa Weaver and Dave Goins – Without them accepting our Tour we don’t come here. Without their organizational skills we don’t even get off the airplane upon arrival in the Country, find a place to sleep, get into the mess hall for chow. They became our eyes and ears, our guides and mentors, educating us along the way, keeping us protected and well fed, even doing our laundry and asking questions about our Church (in that order, yesJ ), and making our stay most luxurious as could be.
The Sound Guys, Donald & Walter – Without them there is nary a decent show for more than 10 people in the room. The unsung hero of all performances are the laborers who raise trusses, create the magic, do everything like ninjas in the darkness while the lights shine bright on the performers who only take the stage for 60-120 minutes, whereas the crew often spends 10x that amount of time prepping for that moment for others to shine. Incredible sacrifice and love these guys have.
And then, of course, the 3 Dudes Who Comprise The Tour –
Dean Kaelin – Without his selflessness to simply play background for David, where he could carry a show on his own and kill, without his expertise in helping David salvage his voice at the age of 13 upon receiving news he had a paralyzed vocal chord, etc etc., we have a very different show. Dean is the musical genius among us and I’m not even worthy to share the stage with his greatness, yet he takes a backseat on this tour as a backup player, I’m just in awe of his humility. He also provides my favorite piece of the show, playing his instrumental improv Jazz or Ballad number based upon the phone number of someone in the audience, it’s a sight to behold!
David Archuleta – I’ve said all that can possibly be said about this great young man who is truly one of the great examples I’ve ever been around. His voice is as the angels of heaven, his heart is pure, his obedience rivals Nephi. Amazing ability to craft each song, care for creating a moment for the audience rather than worrying about making it sound good for his own glory, rather hoping they will feel something, and what’s awesome is that they always do.
Dan Clark – The reason we are here. Without his vision, leadership, and ability with words and influence, we are not having the experience we will tell our grandkids about. I’ve known Dan since I was a little kid, I remember crying as a little boy listening to him give a speech and sing “I’ll Build You A Rainbow” at the end. I’ve looked up to this giant of a man for so long and he teaches me continually, and how I wish in the rest of my whole life I could accomplish 1/10th of the things he has in the past decade….The Genius of Dan is his ability to connect with an audience, to inspire, to get the grizzliest, crabbiest, darkest souls in the room to crack a smile, while bringing the happy to tears of gratitude, the concerned to comfort, and the self-unsure to a level of belief they have never experienced. Dan is the Great Storyteller and Humorist of our Time.
You can see why I’d feel inferior sitting on such a flight with these people I so admire, friends and new people I am fans of. I just so admire watching others excel in their field of endeavor. It makes me push to try harder, to offer my gifts in a new way, to be surrounded by amazing people all the time is what I have strived to do my whole life, and this moment was a microcosm of the life I have created for myself, and the life The Lord has allowed to become for me all at once on that flight. We don’t get there without the support of others, of our family back home, of our wife and children, parents, teachers, loved ones. It all comes full circle to this moment.
What an amazing life-changing trip. How humbling that I would be chosen, out of all of those in the world, to be on this roster of great men, and that it works so well. We are blessed, we are in God’s hands, and His light has lifted the spirits of our Troops, their families and lives. But even as our intention was to come out here and give with the sole purpose of giving for giving’s sake, there is no doubt this trip was for me, to change, to become a better person, to grow, and have my eyes opened to some of the most incredible people I’ve ever seen, our United States Military, their protection of our freedom, their dedication, sacrifice, love, honor, and duty. My prayers go out to their families, my heart goes out to those suffering from sadness, loss, and worry. My smiles are given to those I see pass me in the airports, where I commit to extend a hand of gratitude forever more. My intention is to return home and help my fellow soldiers re-integrate into society: To feel needed, to have a friend, to feel important and loved. To serve the families of those that serve us. I hope all of us will do this, and commit to giving of ourselves to those who give so selflessly to us.
We set up a web site for the Military Families, if there is a way to get it out there and spread the light and joy we brought to the warzones, it is MilitaryTributeTour.com There are only a certain amount of FREE Downloads available, and we hope the families of those serving can enjoy this great web site that will be gone in just over a week.
God bless you, The Reader, for your support and for following us on this incredible journey. I know many have come along in order to see what one person you follow is up to, or another, but I hope we can stay connected into the future and meet in person someday. I am SO Proud To Be An American. I hope you are, too!
** This MOD is working on putting together a more complete slideshow with Jason’s pics and will get them added later today or in tomorrow’s post.
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Dan Clark’s 7/21 Site Update
**Note** Not sure I saw this entry posted on our site, but if I inadvertently missed it in the super plump posts by Pastel over the past couple days I apologize in advance. I’m including a couple parts of Dan’s article (DA referenced of course) but it’s a great article so be sure to head over and read the entire piece if you haven’t already.
Update from the Middle East – Military Tribute Tour
What An Experience So Far! We were shot at in our Chinook helicopter and returned machine gun fire on our way to an outlying FOB (Forward Operating Base). We have toured a Patriot Missile Battery to see how our Army keeps the peace and provides security to Bahrain and United Arab Emirates in the gulf, was given a hand made bracelet by Chris, the leader of the Navy EOD (Explosive Ordinance Disposal Specialist) assigned to Seal Team 8, who is clearly one of the coolest and baddest dudes I have ever met, and then given a flag that was flown over Fendy FOB Jalalabad, Afghanistan on July 4th 2014!!! (Can’t wait to frame it and hang it on my Wall of Fame!) But… now I am ahead of myself!
Our tour took us first to Bahrain where we performed our “Evening of Music, Comedy and Motivational Theater” at three different bases – changing up our show content to accommodate the differences in each audience as we went. In one audience at NSA and the headquarters of the US Navy’s 5th Fleet, we had an amalgamation of military leaders with their spouses and small children, mixed in with screaming teeny-bopper female fans who had a mad crush on David Archuleta!
. . . With the President of the United States and his Senators and House Legislators voting for “sequestration,” which was a flat 10% mandatory cut across our U.S. military budget, there is a call for military force reduction, manpower renovation and mission capability restructuring. This means successful and proven weapons systems and the assets that deliver them are being are being sent to the bone yard. Necessary flying hours that are required to keep our pilots certified and totally prepared for combat have been cut back. And consequently, there is now an ongoing, continuous invitation to thousands of our airmen, soldiers, marines and sailors to separate from the military and end their careers – either voluntary or mandated. Needless to say, there is rampant trepidation and uncertainty among the troops regarding the security and longevity of their military careers, which they assumed would last at least twenty years!
Can you see why I asked David Archuleta to include in his song sets the powerful, healing ballads, “Everybody Hurts Sometime,” “Stand By Me,” and “Bridge Over Troubled Waters?”
. . . Between our three performances in Bahrain we visited the famous “Tree of Life” – a large, tall 600 year old tree, with twisted petrified looking branches covered with green leaves – growing out of the sand in the middle of a desolate desert landscape with no other living thing in sight for as far as the eye could see. The life lesson metaphors were oozing to be discussed including “grow where you are planted – no matter where you go, there you are; when your roots are deep and strong you can withstand harsh environments and still become everything you were born to be!”
* * * CLICK HERE to read Dan’s entire article* * *
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Wow Wow Wow! Gifts from the Military Tour Fab 4!! This page is wonderful. *Mind you, the offerings are for military families. Gifts of music , inspiration, and laughter from David, Dean, and Jason! It says the downloads are “limited”.. If there was a way to donate a few more downloads to be made available for our troops, I would definitely be in!
Click on David’s name/page and you’ll find a BEAUTIFUL BEGIN. offering for military families!
David Archuleta is an American singer-songwriter and actor. As the Season 7 American Idol runner-up, over 30 million television viewers fell in love with his voice – and his masterful performance of John Lennon’s Imagine captivated audiences world-wide.Free Songs by David:
Somewhere Only We Know
Don’t Give Up
Bridge Over Troubled Water
Be Still My Soul
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Let’s Trend the “Fab 4 Military Tour” on Friday!
What a nice addition to their homecoming it would be, for this fantastic group of 4 to land right at the top of worldwide trends!!! They’ve not only graced the bases and make-shift stages with their inspiration, music, and laughter, they’ve also stormed our hearts with their stories shared, their dedication, and their love for all of the troops! Note your start time, get your trending fingers ready, and let’s dooooo this!
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So Cal Lunch With Archubuddies!
Thank you, Sue, for sending in this fun story and photo of your lunch with a great group of Archubuddies!! We love sharing these stories!
I was really looking forward to seeing these ladies again, as we hadn’t gotten together as a group for many months. @PlatinumArchie (Lily), @pikepss (Pam), @erlindita (Linda), @djafanTheVoice (Patty) and myself @SuzzyyFOD (Sue) planned to meet for a Thai food lunch so we could catch up with each other and talk about the exciting things that were happening lately…David’s USO Middle East Military Tour, etc. What better combination is there than great Thai food, good DA friends and a hot SoCal day…ha! It’s funny how time flies when you get a really good discussion going, but we managed to linger in the restaurant for several hours, talking about anything and everything. We all definitely agree how awesome it is that David, Jason, Dean and Dan are selflessly giving their time and effort to travel to these military bases to help inspire, lift spirits and entertain the brave men and women who serve this country. Thanks to the “Fab 4″ for being an inspiration to all of us!
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Fun Fan Creations and Finds!
Mary Dee has the cool Archu~collage touch!
What a fantastic ~15 days it’s been for the Fab 4 and for all of us Fab 4 fans! With what sounds like possibly their last show tonight, this experience for David, Dan, Dean, and Jason has been both eye opening and life changing! Sounds like they’ll be home on Friday or Saturday. What a whirlwind of learning, service, support, adventure, realization, friendship, and faith they’ve had on this tour. It’s amazing what great things life can give you when you’re open and willing to step outside your comfort zone and say “yes” to opportunities. Four people with extraordinary talents using them in extraordinary ways~
I’m very grateful for their consistent kindness and graciousness in sharing so much of this journey! David, Jason Hewlett, Dan Clark, and Dean Kaelin have all opened my eyes as to the daily life, sacrifices, fortitude of our troops, and to their needs. It’s made me think about what more I can do living thousands of miles away. Projects like @Hollyrefod’s “Thanks To The Troops” to gather and give back along with stepping up the prayer support here at home are a couple ways for (me) to begin.
For the glimpses we’ve had into the return of David sharing his beautiful voice on stage, it’s been truly awesome…amazing and wonderful without any ample description…beyond compare, and I’m excited for all that’s to come in our wonderful and wacky Archuworld we call “home!” So glad we’re all here together! I’ll be back tomorrow! Happy hump day!