(KLFY) “I can remember when i told my son that he was going to join the army and the reason why was because he was in college and he didn’t make the grade the second semester and i said son you’re going to join the army.”
Pat Mason Guillory wanted her son’s life to have direction. He joined the military in 1988 and she got a call about a year later.
“He said I’m on my way to Saudi Arabia.”
The United States was launching Operation Desert Storm. She felt helpless until a friend told her about a project to encourage soldiers who were at war.
“It was a school group from Baton Rouge that were already sending mail and my son happened to get one of the letters that they sent there, and he said please get in touch with my mom and tell her to send cookies or whatever and from that I knew I had to do something.”
She sought out other military moms to support one another and their soldier. Her son and other soldiers, thankfully, returned home safe, and Pat says the project slowed down, until her phone rang.
“When I received a call in 2004, it was the middle of the night and I received this call and the person on the other end of the phone says what are you gonna do about this. Clara Davis’s son was killed. He he had spent 20+ years in the military he was getting ready to retire come home he was his mothers only child.”
And then she had an idea.
So it continued to weigh very heavy on me and this is when I decided to go to the parish government and ask for a monument.
But it led to something much bigger.
“The task was placed on me to come up with something to honor all veterans. I said ok, and then I walked out. I said oh my god what have I got myself into.
And so Pat accepted a much bigger mission.
You know I realized that my whole life since I put my son in the military in 1988, that became my passion.
The sit is still a work in progress but Pat is undeterred.
“I’ve always believed that you can deal if you think it and you feel it then you should be able to do it.”