On Monday night Bill and the Young Men were invited to go to a screening of Taking Chance at the Jackson Preforming Arts. Ethan and I were lucky enough to get to tag along. Not really knowing what it was except Bill had said it was to honor the Vets in Jackson and there would be a marine color guard and some movie thing after, I thought it would be great to go and honor any military we could and Ethan loves to see the flag so we thought he would enjoy it as well.
We got up there and met up with one of the families in the ward who's father is a Sheriff in Jackson and was the one that asked the Young Men to come. We waited outside the theater for a bit and I saw a table in the back so I walked over to see what they had displayed. What they had were copies of the movie we were going to see. I didn't even have to pick it up to know this was going to be a tough one to get through. I went back over to Bill and warned him to be prepared as I almost positively would not make it through the movie.
We all took our seats in the theater and the host got up and explained a little of what was going to take place that night. We had an awesome flag ceremony with Marines from SLC that drove up to participate. One of the officers from Jackson sang the National Anthem acapella. It was fabulous. The host got up and introduced the mother and step-father of PFC Chance Phelps and gave a little background as to how this movie "Taking Chance" came to be and what the Chase Phelps Foundation is doing to help those serving and those who have been wounded from serving.
The short version of the story is, their son was killed in Iraq in 2004. The movie was based off the journal entries and memories of LTCol Strobl who volunteered escort service of PFC Phelps' remains home. One thing the parents talked about was when HBO contacted them about making the movie they told them there were 3 things that were a must in order for the movie to follow through.
1. positive Chance
2. positive Marines
3. Positive United States of America
All of these 3 things were incorporated into the movie and I can't praise the movie enough. Kevin Bacon played the part of LTCol Strobl. My respect for Kevin Bacon for taking this roll and wanting to be a part of this cause grew so much that night.
All of you know how much I love to cry. Needless to say I was balling in the first 2 min of the movie, then held my self together, other than the constant tears that ran, through the rest of the movie. By the end I'm not sure if there was anyone who had a dry eye in the theater. Ethan did so well, for the most part he laid on Bill's or my lap. When he would feel the tears hitting his head he would sit up and wipe off my face. It was one of the cutest things ever.
Afterwords the parents had a short Q&A session with the audience. It was so nice to be in a group of people that were so respectful. Other than a few questions about other members of their family who serve most of the questions were wanting to know stories of Chance just to get to know him a little better.
I'm going to post the website for this foundation so you can go online and see how you can help. If you ever get a chance to watch the movie, they said HBO would be airing it again, please take the opportunity to watch and support this wonderful cause.