Saturday Morning Message: Small Treasures Part 2

Author: Carol Lane

Good morning,

The archives of the Saturday Morning Message are very interesting. In response to the question about sharing special items, Kelsey, mother of Michael sent a picture of this alligator. You will read below how this item comforts her. I want to thank those who make this message special throughout the year by reading and sometimes replying to the question of the week. Thank all of you and enjoy this week’s message.

stuffed alligator

Remember, you can write to me anytime — to contribute, subscribe or if you have thoughts on what could make the Saturday Morning Message more helpful. I look forward to hearing from you. My email address is

Carol Lane
Mother of Bryon


Answers from Survivors

Responses from Survivors to last week's question: Would you share a special item of your loved one that will help us get to know that person better?


From Kelsey, mother of Michael: I saved a stuffed alligator that belonged to my son, Michael, USMC. It has a double special meaning. My mother, who has Alzheimer's disease, made it for him when he was very young. I sleep with it every night, hugging it close to fall asleep.




From Samira, mother of Andres: I love this question. My son, Andres, loved Legos. The last time he came home, in December 2014, he saw that his airplane, a C-130J, in a Lego set at Legoland Park. I bought it and he built it. I miss those days. It is in the same place he placed it and will be there until I am gone. I have all his belongings since Andres was a child. All his belongings are priceless. I wish I could share ALL... Thanks again for this opportunity.


wedding ring


From Ginny, wife of John: My husband’s wedding ring is priceless to me. He was air crew in the Air Force and wasn’t allowed to wear jewelry for safety reasons. He fastened his ring on a 550 cord in his pocket and never left home without it. He often bragged that there wasn’t a mission where he didn’t have his ring, his wedding ring. I now keep it on a chain close to my heart. I can touch it and hold it when I’m anxious or need to feel a piece of my husband close to me.


teddy bear


From James, father of Andrew: Andy usually made a fashion statement. He could make anything look good, and look good together – stripes and checks, purple and orange. He was known in his Karate classes for hisReal Men Wear Pink” T-shirts. It’s hard to go through and get rid of your loved one’s things. And what do you do with clothes, with many of his being oh-so-stylish. Our son and daughter-in-law snuck out some of Andy’s shirts and had a bear made out of them for us last Christmas—striped and solid purple, orange, black and white checks. For us, they go together just fine. He’s quite stylish – with his bowtie, of course! And the bear’s smile – cute, but a little bit off – maybe kind of like a smirk and a grin combined. Really quite simple, but, of course, everyone notices him! Very much like Andy – and like him, priceless to us.


If you would like to send a message thanking one or all of those who participated in this week’s Saturday Morning Message, send it to me at and I will make sure your thoughts are passed along to them.


Question for Next Week’s Saturday Morning Message 

The new year is a time to reflect on what has happened the previous year and plan for the future. It can be helpful to share these thoughts with others, so this week’s question is: What is your resolution for the New Year? We look forward to reading your thoughts. 

Would you like to share a question or read how other survivors respond to a topic or question you have? I would love to gather some thoughts for future Saturday Morning Messages. It can be helpful to read and hear how others cope. I encourage you to reply to the Saturday Morning Message by emailing I directly receive all responses that are sent to this address. In order to have your reply included in next week’s message, it is best to send your answers to me by Tuesday morning of the following week. Thank you to everyone responding this week and those who read this message


♫ Song for the Week

This week’s song is from Leslie, mother of Eugene. Leslie wrote, "My Immortal" sung by Evanescence is about a spirit that stays with you to the point of wishing they might leave. First, I like the sound from the group and that it’s a ballad that gets what it’s like to want a spirit staying with you forever. I also believe the lyricist understood that time doesn’t heal.... You adjust. As I listened, I thought of my son who I miss dearly.”

You can send me favorite songs for this song of the week section at and include a note about why the song is meaningful to you.

Other Items and Events of Interest

Arlington Cemetery family at headstone

Join us on Memorial Day Weekend, May 28 to 30, for our 27th Annual National Military Survivor Seminar! We will be live streaming all of our general sessions with guest speakers.

Important Note: In-person registration is still open, but we are in a waitlist situation due to COVID occupancy restrictions in the State of Virginia. 

If you have any questions, email or call our Helpline at 202.588.TAPS (8277).

Learn More and Register


▶▶  Connect With Your TAPS Family 

You can discover all the opportunities to connect with your TAPS Family on our website at the TAPS Event Calendar.

About the Saturday Morning Message

The Saturday Morning Message (SMM) is a weekly communication contributed by survivors. The primary focus of the SMM is to foster peer-based connections for support and encouragement. It is the goal of this communication to foster a safe, supportive place where we can openly share in a nonjudgmental and caring manner. Read and contribute as you are comfortable. Content submitted for the SMM is edited for space considerations and may be used in other TAPS publications. The loving family at TAPS is available to you 24 hours a day. Please call 202-588-TAPS (8277).