In my consulting and real estate travels around the Mid-Atlantic region, I often pass by Dover Air Force Base in Delaware. Four times this week. I am often amazed by the size of the C-5A transports coming in and out of the base and look forward to driving right under the approach as the monster planes either take off or land. The roar is awe-striking as the big shadow crosses the highway I’m on.
And then my thoughts ALWAYS turn to a short prayer. I pray that each landing I see is followed by the roar of the engines and the behemoth plane taking right back off again. It’s called a touch and go…training for take-offs and landings. The reason for my prayer, you see, is that Dover AFB is where many of the cargo and personnel aircraft originate on their way to Baghdad or Kabul. And, as the graves registration center on the East Coast, it is the destination of many young men and women returning to the States for the last time…on their way home to their families for the last time.
My prayer is for each plane to be a training mission and not a part of the heart-wrenching experience it must be for a family to come to grips with the loss of a son, or daughter, or dad, or mom. “Please, Lord, let it just be a touch and go.”
What does this have to do with innkeeping? Probably nothing directly…it’s more of a therapeutic outlet for me, my thoughts of my fellow West Pointers, my newer role as a Poppie, and, probably less seldom seen, the softer side of an old codger.
But I would like to make this offering to any innkeeper who feels similarly. And I know the people in this hospitality and care-giving industry are GREAT at such feelings. I am asking that innkeepers support our troops and their families. If you offer:
- Military discounts
- Comp rooms for military families…as a surprise gift, not necessarily a published rack rate
- Other benefits, recognition, or gifts of value to military families
please let me know and I will list your name and inn, with link, and the benefit you provide, along with my heartfelt thanks, in my upcoming newsletters and blog postings. We are a great industry of professionals who understand the impact an innkeeper can have on a guest…and with the ability to send an appreciative gift to those who deserve our thanksgiving. Scott