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Ann Margaret's Story- A Thank You For Our Men In Service

By: katy halsema On: 5:59 PM
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  • Viet Nam 1966 

    Richard, (my husband), never really talked a lot about his time in 
    Viet Nam other than he had been shot by a sniper. However, he had a rather grainy, 8 x 10 black and white photo he had taken at a USO show of Ann Margret with Bob Hope in the background that was one of his treasures.

    A few years ago, Ann Margret was doing a book signing at a local bookstore. Richard wanted to see if he could get her to sign the treasured photo so he arrived at the bookstore at 
    12 o'clock for the7:30 signing.

    When I got there after work, the line went all the way around the bookstore, circled the parking lot and disappeared behind a parking garage. Before her appearance, bookstore employees announced that she would sign only her book and no memorabilia would be permitted.

    Richard was disappointed, but wanted to show her the photo and let her know how much those shows meant to lonely GI's so far from home. Ann Margret came out looking as beautiful as ever and, as second in line, it was soon Richard's turn.

    He presented the book for her signature and then took out the photo. When he did, there were many shouts from the employees that she would not sign it. Richard said, "I understand. I just wanted her to see it."

    She took one look at the photo, tears welled up in her eyes and she said, "This is one of my gentlemen from 
    Viet Nam and I most certainly will sign his photo. I know what these men did for their country and I always have time for 'my gentlemen.'"

    With that, she pulled Richard across the table and planted a big kiss on him. She then made quite a to-do about the bravery of the young men she met over the years, how much she admired them, and how much she appreciated them There weren't too many dry eyes among those close enough to hear. She then posed for pictures and acted as if he were the only one there.

    Later at dinner, Richard was very quiet. When I asked if he'd like to talk about it, my big strong husband broke down in tears. "That's the first time anyone ever thanked me for my time in the Army," he said.

    That night was a turning point for him. He walked a little straighter and, for the first time in years, was proud to have been a Vet. I'll never forget Ann Margret for her graciousness and how much that small act of kindness meant to my husband.

    I now make it a point to say "Thank you" to every person I come across who served in our Armed Forces. Freedom does not come cheap and I am grateful for all those who have served their country.

    If you'd like to pass on this story, feel free to do so. Perhaps it will help others to become aware of how important it is to acknowledge the contribution our service people make.

    A special note from the No Hag team to ALL service members: Thank you for your service and you are more appreciated than you know!!


    1. Freedom does not come cheap, indeed.

    2. A most wonderful story of thanking our Military, those who protect us and the freedoms we enjoy. I SALUTE you ALL!

    3. A heart warming story. It makes me sad that these people risk their lives for their home land and this man had to wait so long to get a thank you for it.

    4. A very beautiful story. It is wonderful to see how much it touched the man. People should always be thankful for everything, a simple "thank you" can do so much!!

    5. That was a nice thing the Star did for the guy. I think all military are Stars!

    6. God bless Ann Margaret and God bless our military members as well.

    7. What a beautiful story! Indeed, a simple "thank you" can mean so much.

    8. This is such a wonderful story. Ann Margaret did a great thing by making this Veteran feel appreciated.

    9. I am going to have to pass this on to my brother. He served in the Army in Afghanistan and is now over there as a contractor but thinks that people don't appreciate what they do.