Monday, August 20, 2012

"The Soldier Comes Home for Good...But a Part May Never"

   It seems surreal to set before this computer and type a few words again for my blog, "Chillicothe Talks."  Some times a person can be "home" on the outside but still not "home" on the inside.  But I will attempt to put into words something of what I mean.
   When I left this last time it was just plan a part of me was torn away and an emotional numbness took it's place.  This last military mission seemed to be a cultimation of all my life experiences, training...shoot, I was stretched in areas that I had not even considered.  I created a spreadsheet that "was the first compliation of this data to provide a consolidated view."  The U.S.Army Medical Command at Fort Sam Houston, Texas gave me an ARCOM (Army Commendation Medal) which is not bad for someone who had never done a spreadsheet in his whole life (Hey I earned my Masters degree on a Commodore 64 computer and dot matrix printer).   Outside of work I linked up with a bunch of Bikers who got to know me first as a fellow Biker before they learned my professional identitites. I was christened their unofficial Chaplain.  I worshipped at a great encouraging church and I was just sure that God Almighty was going to keep me in San Antonio.  But He allowed the doors to shut.  Quite frankly, it just plain confused me.  I listened as higher rank began openly talking about their experiences of dealing with the emotional upheaval of their war experiences and I had to admit it all was beginning to bulge in me. The bouts of depression, anxiety, panic attacks, sleepless nights, nightmares, hyper alertness... (My Beloved wife must have lived in hell when I was home).  No one saw this outside of our home but it was active before I left on this last mission.  I learned first hand that one cannot ignore a splinter without infection settling in.  I had to take an honest look at myself.  I served in Iraq 2005, my staff and I were responsible for over 700 medical evacuations and some of those images still walk across me. Right now as I type this I can still feel the cold sensation of blood on my hands as I and my staff had to pick up the bloody uniforms, go through ever pocket, itemize everything in their pockets, wallets, credit card numbers, pictures of a girl friend or boy friend, husband, wife, children...they ceased to be nameless victims of war as we "knew" who they were.  We called Mortuary Affairs for those who died while at our location and we responsible for guarding the body and their equipment.  There were nights we were on alert when the perimeter had been breached.  During a mortar attack I shoved Soldiers in the bunkers and since there wasn't enough room, I stood in the doorway.  They say you don't hear the one that gets you...I counted 5 but they said there were 7 less that 100 feet away.  I must stop here. I can tell you that PTSD* left untreated will show its face.  And so, I returned home this last year, basically shut myself up and got some help to manage the symptoms. 
  Yes, "The Soldier Comes Home for Good" but a part may never.  I don't want you to understand because then you would have the images inside your head that are in mine...and no other person who has ever witnessed traumatic events wants you have them either.  I am not alone in this as more and more National Guard and Reservists will join me in saying "The Soldier Comes Home for Good...But a Part May Never". 
   Pray for us, but don't dictate to us. Don't preach to us.  PLEASE don't tell any of us that you "know what we are going through" could you "KNOW" what another person actually feels?  You didn't live another person's life.  We haven't seen what you have witnessed any more than you were there with us at the time we witnessed what we did at that particular time.  It isn't yours...its ours...just accept the fact "The Soldier Comes Home for Good...But a Part May Never."
Please feel free to contact me on FaceBook at Chillicothe Talks,,

*(As in any condition there are varying degrees of severity.  Not everyone who has PTSD is about to explode any more than everyone who has PMS kills their spouse...)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Vote Responsibly

A few years ago I envisioned community involvement so I began a blog with that in mind. Yet, life throws us curves & military responsibilities pulled me away from home. However, the future of then is now & we are still required to become involved. I urge you to vote responsibly for those candidates who will make our desired future a reality.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

"Doing Something is More than Words"

25 April 2010

History is made up of people coming and going. There is always a lot of talking going on but few who actually do any thing that makes a difference.

As you know, Chillicothe Ohio is known as "First Capital City." We can boast of being the third capital also as Zanesville, Ohio has the honor of being the "Second Capital City." Now with that said, Columbus Ohio has that honor of being the "Fourth Capital City." For more in depth trivia I refer you to some Ohio basic history.

Long before any of us who are reading this appeared on the scene the area known as Chillicothe Ohio was well known. Those first European settlers arrived while Native Americans filled the valley as they had for generations upon generation. These new pale faced aliens had odd customs and peculiar manners compared to the locals. As the push West across the Alleghany Mountains became more familiar more and more settlers arrived. Old ways and old customs were forced away as these new arrivals moved in. Odd that in merely 200 years those who had lived here first are now moved into the back pages of history.

My family background was second cousin to Rufus Putnam founder of the first settlement of Ohio. I know that makes any claim to actual relation a stretch but I still like to state the fact. Rufus was a Revolutionary War Soldier and was given the land for his service to America. Of course, the locals weren't none to pleased with his arrival. Based on what I have read and what is taught down in Washington County, old Rufus wasn't about to leave. For more in depth look at those early scalpings, killings, fightings and the like I again refer you to history books.

Like I said history is about people coming and going, as well as, the mark they left behind. Some things we cannot keep from happening. One group arrives and another group leaves. Some things are remembered, some things are honored. Here in Chillicothe we have the outdoor drama Tecumseh about the Native America leader who fought bravely against those early settlers but was defeated. Rather than refer you to a history book I want to invite you to see this production, you won't regret it.

Now to my closing remark: Being neighborly isn't just a buzzword but an action oriented requirement for each of us. We can learn from the past that it takes determination and intestinal fortitude to make a difference and leave a mark. I hope you'll leave a mark that will be a good one. As neighbors we have responsibility. Pride is seen in how we talk, how we live and how we interact with those around us. Property values go down when one neighbor allows his/her place to fall into disrepair. It can be something as simple as crab grass running rule across an unkept yard, broken sidewalks, gutters hanging down, broken down vehicles in the drive, maybe it’s having a building unpainted or burned out and abandoned. It takes more than friendly words and good intentions, it takes doing something. You get the picture. Take pride in your own property as it affects the neighbors and what people say about you.

By the time you read this I will be gone again with the military. Off and on for over 40 years I have volunteered to serve my Country. I can tell you this time it wasn’t so easy for me...never had it hit me this hard before but maybe it's because I am older and appreciate the neighbors and community that I call my hometown.

So, you see, it's up to you ... always was. I just tried to make a difference, leave a mark...’cause I know that things change faster than any of us can see coming over the horizon.

H. R. Grimm

Thursday, March 11, 2010

"Be A Good Neighbor: Think of the Possibilities"

March 11, 2010
There are news reports of neighborhoods that have fallen into the hands of derelict landlords, drug dealers, gangs and prostitution, not necessarily in that order. It could be easy to imagine that these types of crimes only happen in the “bad” neighborhoods but these issues can happen in any neighborhood. All it takes is one small step - neighbors let it happen.

Now some may say that “neighbors let it happen” is too harsh but who is responsible? Some blame these activities on the lack of patrolling police or the irresponsibility of landlords. Some may blame their City Administration or City Council as just not caring enough. Some may blame it on the “signs of the times” sighting a moral breakdown within society.

However, I do not want to lay blame but to come up with a simple plan of action. You and I are the first line of defense for our homes and families. If my neighbor allows crabgrass to flourish in their yard I can do one of two things: I can grumble and let it all spread into mine or I can grumble while putting “Weed & Feed” on my yard. It is the same thing about the activities I see in my neighborhood.

There are numerous Neighborhood Watch Programs. There is a program where citizens create teams who walk their streets with radios, cell phones and cameras. Another program has a type of “team leaders” with a military sense of training about it. I don’t mind telling you that if these are necessary for you to impact your neighborhood I will do everything in my power to encourage you and pray for your safety. As an old infantry soldier and preacher, I mean this!

Yet, here in my Brewer Heights neighborhood in Chillicothe Ohio, I do not see the need for these programs. Over the last two years I have been to almost every home in Brewer Heights. My goal is to “rally the troops” if you will with a simple plan. Get to know your neighbors and “Live your faith values outside your place of worship in your home and with your neighbors.”

Here’s how this can be put into practice: Build a line of communication with your neighbors. Get to know their names, where they work and what cars they drive. Get to know the hours they work too. Maybe your dog is keeping them awake when they work nights. Maybe your music is a little loud or not their type. If you see your neighbor’s trash can blowing into the street, move it for them. If you know your neighbor gets their newspaper by 10AM every morning and at 1PM it’s still there, check on them. If you see your neighbor’s garage door open late at 11PM and you know it is usually down by 10PM, check on them. Again, “Live your faith values outside your place of worship in your home and with your neighbors.”

I want the word to go out that in our city people are watching here in Brewer Heights…because we care. As we join our faith values together actively living on our streets things are going to be seen in the positive. People who may never attend your place of worship are going to see that you live what you say you believe and if they ever need someone to help them or pray for them, they are going to call on you. Wow, what a concept! It can’t be taxed, hired or outdated!

So, that’s my Brewer Heights Neighborhood Watch Program concept. We started it two years ago and I know you’re watching me and I want you to rest assured that I’m watching you. Why? Because we care about our neighbors, our neighborhood and our city.

Be a Good Neighbor: Think of the Possibilities!

H. R. Grimm
“Catch the Vision of Possibilities”

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

"Facts and Possibilities"

On an old television program there was a Sergeant Friday who was known to say, “Just the facts, ma’am, just the facts.” Yet, facts are odd things, aren’t they?

Some people say that you can’t argue with facts as these are the plain simple truth. Yet, some people say that facts are like statistics, they are easy to manipulate.

Of course, there’s COL Jessup from the movie “A Few Good Men” with his quote “You want the truth, you can’t handle the truth!”

Undeniably we must admit that facts are all around us screaming to be examined and heeded. Unfortunately, our acceptance of the facts and acting on the facts is as old as the human struggle itself. The pages of history are filled with many a parent who tried to get their teenager to listen to reason only to be ignored. Alas, the heartache that follows lingers long after that momentary thrill and that’s a fact of life.

Sometimes, facts are just too obvious to ignore and they shock us when they are presented. My youngest daughter was four years old when my mother died. This little angel of mine was standing next to me in the funeral home when an elderly woman came over and said sympathetically, “I am so sorry about your grandmother.” My little daughter looked up at this lady and with child-like acceptance of the indisputable truth said flatly, “She’s dead, you know.” This factual statement shocked the lady but it was a fact, you know.

Facts can make us uncomfortable. Do you really want the facts about your favorite dessert? Do you really want the facts about global warming, racial issues, your politician, preacher, religion or your kid? Then there are the personal facts: How old you are, how much you weigh, how fast you were going, how much you had to drink, who you were with or what you were thinking. Many a man has been wounded in needless battle because he failed to remember COL Jessup’s quote above when answering a beloved in regard to weight or dress. Again, all too late a simple fact was ignored.

Honestly, we must let the record show that there have been times the actual details were manipulated to present a point of view that was misrepresented. This partial presentation of information is as old as the human race. Need I remind you of the Garden of Eden and a fruit tree? I’m just stating a biblical fact.

Here are some facts: Chillicothe Transit System holds the honor of being the largest rural transit system in Ohio (ODOT “Status of Public Transit in Ohio, July 2009). Chillicothe population grew approximately 2% from 2000–2008 ( & Chillicothe is 625 feet above sea level ( Ross county received $124,000,000 in tourism for 2007 (

Now there are other facts that must be addressed and they will be in time. That too is a fact.

Facts abound and based on what you want to do with the facts you can build a place up or tear it down. I chose to build. Fact is, in my hometown of Chillicothe, Ohio I see potential for lasting improvement and future development. Fact is, people are people where ever you go but if the truth be told, we have a tendency to see in people what we want to see and that’s a fact.
(c) 02MARCH2010 hrg

"Catch the Vision of Possibilities"
H. R. Grimm

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

"Heated Up and Taking Action: Think of the Possibilities"

Here in Chillicothe Ohio there is a lot of snow lying on the ground right now. It has left us with that winter wonder land effect of “throw-another-log-on-the-fire” and bundle up. Of course, with this much snow and these bitter temperatures a majority of us are just hunkering down inside the warmth of our homes.

Some would think that during these snowy days and frigid nights little takes place here in Chillicothe Ohio. However, just the opposite is true.

We sit in our homes nestled away from the hustle and bustle of traffic congestion on Bridge Street. What we saw on our way through town now begins to talk to us. We remember the look of our downtown; when we hear a siren we think about our fire fighters, EMTs and police out in this cold; we think about those less fortunate than us and wonder how they stay warm.

Not everyone is merely sitting at home watching sitcoms or sports. We are reading the newspaper, the blogs, joining in internet conversations, talking on the phone, and listening to our families and friends. We are watching and hearing everyone from Glen Beck and Bill O’Reilly to John Stewart and Wolf Blitzer but these are not our only source of information.

We are a city of thinkers and doer, as well as, believers and pray-ers. Drive through our city and there are places of worship on more streets than can be printed here. We have religious broadcasting on our televisions and radios. Together these provide us our spiritual encouragement and challenges. We hear sermons about Godly responsibilities, accountability to each other before God, justice, honor, dignity and reminded that “faith without works is dead.”

Hunkered down inside our homes we use words like “those politicians” or “here’s what needs to be done.” We talk about Democrats, Republicans, Independents, Libertarians, Socialists, preachers, Christians, Muslims, church, we talk about taxes, Washington, Columbus and we are talking about the Tea Party Movement.

“We, the people…” The people of Chillicothe Ohio are talking. Trust me we are doing more than talking. We are listening, getting warmed and heated up and praying.

I have a feeling there's a big thaw coming. I don’t mean one based on the season of the year. Once people get all fired up they want more than political promises that ain’t got enough hot air to melt snow.

I’m talking about uniting our voices; taking a stand and making things work right without all that look of flame with no heat or heart. I’m talking about living our faith values outside our place of worship. I’m talking our present and future here.

Talk is cheap but it is fanning the flame of action - "Heated Up and Taking Action: Think of the Possibilities"

H. R. Grimm
“Catch the Vision of Possibilities”

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Thursday, January 28, 2010

"Time to Admire the View " by Jenn Grimm Bourbeau

My goal for this blog is to promote positive influence. This is the type of impact that appears to be lacking in so much of life. Hence, "Catch the Vision of Possibilities" catch phrase.

During the month of January 2010 my military responsibilities have been in Ohio, Colorado and Michigan. Which makes positive reinforcement even more important. So, while I haven't been doing much writing for the blog I promise I'll try harder in the near future.

Below is a few lines from my oldest daughter, Jenn Grimm. She has allowed me to borrow her own posted writing. I cannot add to it - to me it speaks more than words and fits quite well with the frame of mind that Chillicothe Ohio could use more of...
Thank you, Jenn


Sometimes I feel like going for a walk in my mind. To take a break from life and admire the views.
I can see the old ways of thinking, as if they were old growths in a forest. There are some parts of me that have grown into redwood trees. Tall and proud. They are easily recognized.
I can see "new growth" too. lush and new. So much potential. All colors and can bring a mix of emotions, stimulate the senses, and add to the beauty of the view.
But all of a sudden on this "walk" I come to an area that has been neglected. I see areas that need to be replanted. As I mature, I recognize this is the hardest of all. Some of this "dead wood" is embedded deeply into the surrounding view. If you squint just right this kinda has character. But it really is a dead spot. So begins the time to remove what is dead and make room for the new.
At first, I have the motivation. Adrenaline and focus keep me energized on cutting down the dead trees. My "saw" is shiny and new. I can feel the speed and enthusiasm making the tough job so much easier. But right as I get to the last few inches of the thick, heavy tree trunk.... I realize my blade is dull. It has gotten a bit rusty and I feel exhausted. The end is in sight, but it seems to be never-ending to get there. I forget that I can rest. I forget that this is truly all in my mind. I forget that time, and maturity have their own removal system. I get so hung up on that one dead spot, I forget to look at the beautiful views. Or the real character.
Until I take a deep breath. Open my eyes.
Oh, yeah. I am not holding the saw by myself. I didn't grow overnight. And best of all.... I am loved just as I am. Take that, dead wood and rusty blades! You never saw that view coming!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

"Believing and Living the Ultimate Possibilities"

The snow has melted in this mid-January thaw. A few little piles of snow still linger but soon these will be but a memory. Not long ago our city and region was blanketed with pure white on every lawn, sidewalk and street. All that was covered is apparent now for all to see. Yet, winter isn’t over and there will be another blanket or two as the same cycle will repeat its seasonal work.

Such is life in so many aspects; given enough time things are seen for what they are.

Too often this previous line is in reference to that which is the negative and the disheartening. Maybe it is merely our very nature that makes us demand every lurid detail of failures. Regardless, it has become our American culture, hence, all day radio talk shows, and numerous analyses on television and, let’s face it, bad news sells newspapers, magazines and tabloids. In the final analysis just what is the social or eternal redemptive factor of such?

In the wake of such reports of lives destroyed there are family members left to over exposure. Scarred with the scarlet letter these are to pick up the pieces of respectability. At times, I fear that somehow the message of redemption seems lost as if beyond the reaches of the Church.

However, something positive is going on here in Chillicothe, Ohio, seen by some, reported by too few, disbelieved by others but happening just the same. It may be a trickle but if you are like me, I am praying for a gulley washer and I think it is longed for by the masses. It is happening across this city and region, it may be happening in your area too but you just don’t seem to hear enough about it.

I have heard it and witnessed it on Jefferson Avenue. I know two locations on Dayton Street where it is expected. I know those who are gathering for it on High Street, Main Street, Mill Street, Mulberry Street, Paint Street, Water Street, Western Avenue, and more streets than I can report. I know it is happening out east at Highways 50 and 35. I hear of it burning in the crossroads communities of Kinnikinec, Hallsville and Richmondale and from one end of this area to the other.

What I am talking about are people who refuse to play church and something divine is happening in their midst. These are people who refuse to let the current state of affairs dictate their lives. These believe in a God who holds them accountable. No, I am not saying they have perfected their so called sainthood but I am talking about people who have met their God and they want all that He has for them, so they are giving Him all of them. They seek forgiveness before a holy God and find it along with the intestinal fortitude to make restitution for wrongs. They will humbly tell you they have no right or desire to sit in a “holier than thou” attitude of self-righteous pious snobbery. They have learned to turn off the 24 hour television and radio to get alone with their God and Savior. They read their Bible and see it as a love story from a Heavenly Father to His children as they feel His touch in their lives. They give of their time, their money, their talents and gifts to their neighbors and community. They pray for the sick with expected results – no, not everyone is being healed but some are. If you ask them why they do what they do, they will tell you it is because they met the Master of Life Eternal. Put them on a witness stand in any court and they will tell you He has given them a peace inside that passes human understanding. They sleep at night with the sense of a living Redeemer who let them drink of a cleansing of love that they will tell you they never deserved.

Amid all the news reports and rumors of some who morally and socially failed I can tell you that something positive is happening in Chillicothe Ohio. It am be only a trickle of what’s yet to come but it is time to uncover it and talk about it. I merely write this to encourage you to join with so many others who have surrendered their lives to God and together we will see that believing and living provides the ultimate possibilities. (c) 19JAN2010 HRGrimm

Catch the Vision of Possibilities
H. R. Grimm

(As I type this the devastation of Haiti is on all our minds. I encourage you to live your faith outside your place of worship and put our money to work as His hands of healing, redemption and restoration. On our money is printed “In God we trust” as the world looks at us a Christian nation, let’s not disappoint them.)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Chillicothe Ohio: A City With Possibilities

We’ve gone through the hectic weeks that span Thanksgiving to Christmas to New Years. Once the bitter cold lessens its grip we’ll finish taking down the Christmas lights and trimmings. Around us the traffic is returning to its normal time schedule of to and off work. The stores will soon make it through the lines at the return counter. What’s left is to pack away the trimmings and pay the bills.

The recent blanket of snow makes Chillicothe Ohio look even more like those inviting post cards of seasons past. The historic buildings gracing our downtown and streets remind us of a slower pace. There is something nostalgic about those times of years gone by as the people who built them had vision, expectation and ambition. They possessed a drive to succeed and downright determination to overcome obstacles of economy and travel. Today we have this city and region because of them and they still speak to us of what we can become following their example.

As the snow and cold have settled some of us have hunkered down inside our warm homes. This has kept some of us from our trips to church or store. Yet, there was a time in our youth we knew no boundaries. We possessed an enthusiasm of life that saw frigid temperatures and snow as opportunities and adventure. The slightest hill became a snow slide and when there were no sleds we improvised!

Youth calls to youth and they brave the cold, the wind, the snow and ice to gather. Youth believes possibilities, sees over obstacles, thinks beyond the limits and hopes above the crisis. Ah, youth…as it has been said it is wasted on the young!

The calendar tells us that another year has come and gone. With it some of us have lost our youthful energy, enthusiasm and vigor. Some changes were expected as with any aging entity. A family grows and what were restful nights are now but a mere memory. A 16 year old gains their license to drive and parents experience new prayer filled faith in the Almighty. The empty nest home beams with unbridled pride as a new grandchild is added to the family. Where there is life there is growth, an altering of the former and transforming. This is the cycle of life and where life exists these take place. It is in the loss of our youthful view of life that we become rigid, overly cautious, unfaltering and frozen.

As I look around our city I see possibilities. I see the potential for growth, an altering of the former and transformation. I see a city with possibilities and with it are hills waiting for improvising!

Catch the Vision of Possibilities
H. R. Grimm

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Even in Disappointment There's Possibilities

I doubt very much if I will get everything I wanted for Christmas. I’m too old to sit on Santa’s knee but I’ve still got my wish list. Oh, I’ve got some big ticket items that I wanted but realize now I probably won’t get them. Global warming means there is little chance of snow here in South-Central Ohio on Christmas morning. Iran fired off some missiles recently so world peace probably isn’t going to happen. I had a big wish for the Carlisle Building to magically appear renovated and operational but I can tell it won’t happen anytime soon either.

Now don’t get me wrong, even though I won’t be getting these things doesn’t mean that I’ve lost my cheer. There are other items that are each a present sent from God. I’ve got a loving wife and will see all my kids at Christmas. My son’s tour is over in Iraq and he’ll be home in time for Christmas. I’ve got great neighbors and friends as well. I have people who pray for me and encourage me in my walk of faith. I also have been witnessing my community working together uniting their voices in a concerted effort. This last one tells me that while the world at large may be going to that hot place in a hand basket, my hometown is continuing to work together.

Any preacher, politician and Santa Claus will tell you that not everyone wants the same things. However, the one thing people do want is to be heard and wisdom tells us to let their voices be heard or they will just speak louder. As I listen to those around me I hear the growing sounds of hope, ideas, prayers and visions not just for themselves or a few but the betterment for the whole community. I hear the average citizen talking about the needed improvements in the downtown for more shops and restaurants. I hear citizens unifying with solid ideas of restoration and preservation for our historic buildings. I hear people talking with increasing interest for a First Capital Orchestra. I hear awareness of the need for increased law enforcement and fire department personnel. I hear plans from City Officials for public works at the Neenah Gardens neighborhood and plans for easing traffic congestion on Bridge Street. I hear of continued professional growth and expansion of services at Adena Medical Center.

So while I may not get everything I wanted for Christmas I have enough unopened expectations of the people of Chillicothe Ohio to keep my excitement and cheer. This keeps me looking for the things that are yet to be which are the result of focusing on the positive, preparing the plan and sharing the vision as we work together for the good of all. I hope you have a most blessed Christmas.

Catch the vision of possibilities.

H. R. Grimm

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

"Two Powerful Partners of Possibilities"

There are two partners that go hand in hand that leave a lasting positive impression. When these two grace a home and community there is joy, an obvious sense of refuge, a "Welcome Home" flows upon opening the door and your arrival.

As these two abundantly abound in the lives of people they leave a trace of cheer, hope, positive expectation and concern that calls to return as often as you can to their presence. One cannot help but be drawn where these two are allowed to be in control.

I am talking about Praise and Thankfulness.

Some may think these two are passé' or out of date. Some may think that they allow too much laxity and shallowness. Oh, but "some" have missed the power that these two radiate.

PRAISE - that simple power to encourage another. This is not merely the response of passing the salt and pepper at a table this is an example of what's in the heart, mind and character of the one saying it.

THANKFULNESS - that trait of gratitude that seasons life. When allowed to flow it is the seasoning of a conversation that I personally guaranty you will want more and more.

Let these two train you, coach you, possess you, own you, rule you and you will find yourself pleased with yourself and life in general.

This week we will have but one day set aside called Thanksgiving. Some we'll make it an emphasis for a day or so and it might even stretch out for the week. But I'm telling you when you have Praise and Thankfulness as a major part of your daily life you will feast for the year.

I have heard these two in action here in Chillicothe Ohio for it is a trait of our community at large. We, a proud part of the region where people cling to our guns and religion, say grace before a meal. We hold the door for those we respect. We work hard and give thanks for our abilities. We hunt and we are thankful for the bounty. We believe in people and the God who made us. We expect the best out of ourselves and we give the best of ourselves to others.

There are many reasons for living here in Chillicothe Ohio but two of the best are these community traits - Praise and Thankfulness. We don’t have a monopoly on these but I can tell you if you lived here you’d find them part of our culture and we refuse to let them go out of style.

Let me invite you to give these two a little more control over your life and you will understand how powerful they really are.

H. R. Grimm

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

"Promoting Possibilities"

We’ve all driven through neighborhoods and cities where there is historic significance. Some communities have that sense of renewed vision and vitality. The streets, sidewalks and homes capture one’s attention. The value of the homes increase with each passing year and even those who live there seem to possess an attractive quality. The shops and stores that grace these areas invite all to stop and browse. One could say that these neighborhoods and communities reflect pride. These are the communities that attract living-wage employers and a higher standard of living for the families. This is that which proclaims to all the vision that promotes possibilities.

We’ve also driven through those areas where the dynamic of significance has been lost. Regardless of the history of the area we feel uneasy, unsafe and find ourselves locking our car doors while wasting no time continuing onto our destination. It is like the neighborhood and the community itself has lost their desire to succeed. Unfortunately, once desire has dimmed, the light of hope is lost, the taste of pride grows stale and a depressive cloud settles. The unpainted buildings proclaim the sense of despair housed inside the community itself and becomes what is seen on the outside. It is so tragic what is forced to be seen by all who pass. Empty worn out, neglected hollow shelled buildings can become a plague upon a downtown and neighborhood. Robbed of care and vitality they are left to crumble into irreparability. It sadly can be said that these areas have lost their vision of possessing or promoting possibilities.

What is it that causes some neighborhoods and communities to maintain or renew their vitality? What causes people to see beyond the passing of time and empowers them towards promoting possibilities?

I believe it is desire, vision and the refusal to accept less than the best.

Chillicothe, Ohio is my hometown and I know I am not alone believing great things for her. Our historic significance is alive and aching to be honored. This First Capitol of Ohio has stood proudly since before Statehood in 1803. The historic Majestic Theater on Second Street has continued in operation since 1853. The historic buildings of our downtown cry out to be used and filled with commerce and activity. Our historic downtown is soon going through revitalization along with the expected Carlisle and Howson building restoration. The significance of after-business-hour eateries and shops in our historic downtown along with ample parking will show the vision of our city leaders for which our founding fathers would be proud.

Show me a community that takes purposeful pride and action in her downtown and I will show you a people who possess that which is Promoting Possibilities.

Catch the Vision of Possibilities

H. R. Grimm

Monday, November 9, 2009

Coming to Grips with the Shooting at Fort Hood

As a Soldier I am still trying to come to grips with the shooting at Fort Hood last week. My military career is spread over the last four decades which means I served with individuals completing their 30 year career from WWII, Korea, Viet Nam and every conflict since. I was raised just south of Kent Ohio and was hitch-hiking back to Fort Bragg, NC, in full dress uniform four hours after the Kent State shooting. I have seen the horrors of war in Iraq up close and personal working in a Combat Support Hospital and had the opportunity to speak with those who wounded and injured from war. The rigors of military life have left their disabling effects on my body and I now live within those physical limitations. For the last three months I have been “tapped” to be a presenter at the Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program to speak to Soldier who just returned from Iraq and Afghanistan. My son is scheduled to return home from Iraq before Christmas. On the civilian side of life I am mental health professional and an ordained clergy. As I said, I am still trying to come to grips with the shooting at Fort Hood last week.

An event like this sends shockwaves through the military soul. Regardless of the public opinion on the war these are still our military and this is just not supposed to happen. For those of us who have served and those of us still in uniform our mind struggles to grasp that one of our own could have done this wicked deed. It becomes even more horrifying when it was someone who we, the military Soldier, trusted to share and help heal our own psychological wounds. Often those in the news are faceless statistics but to many of us in the Army it wasn’t this time.

Two of my personal friends, fellow Soldiers, were among those who were in the building. They too are mental health professionals and as I write this due to restrictions I have not heard from them. But I can tell you that the families of those killed, the wounded and their families and those who witnessed this event need your prayers. Our Army family needs your prayers too.

Sometimes, we become too lax, we become too complacent, we become too focused on our own opinions and agendas. Yet, an event like this brings the news close to us and we must re-evaluate our own lives and just how fragile life and society is on a daily basis.

We, in the military will adjust, adapt and overcome, that is our motto. We will come up with better security and better screening measures. We will listen with more in-depth understanding and insights. Meantime, we will heal by prayer and confession. This is the only way I know to come to grips with the shooting at Fort Hood last week.

H. R. Grimm

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Stand Tall and Proud with Possibilities

Stand Tall and Proud with Possibilities

The trees will continue to stand silent and proud against the harsh approaching winter as a mute witness to their strength. This is like an unwritten testimony of my hometown.

There are some people and places that just radiate. You may not be able to put it into words but there is something about them that pulls you to them. You can’t help but want to get close to them and have your life reflect what possesses them. I feel this way about my hometown of Chillicothe, Ohio.

Now, there may be some in other areas of the State and Country who may cast a mocking glance at this rural setting 50 miles south of Columbus, Ohio. Some may call this rural small city strong willed and opinionated but I call them empowered with resilience and possessed with a sheer determination to succeed and improve. I see it daily on the faces and hear it in the conversations around me. Here lives that fiber, that ingredient that bonds a society together that makes things move forward. It is that which demands more from themselves and those who claim to come to serve. It isn’t merely a fad of conversational style or a shallow passing tone it is the very core of who we are and who makes up this region. My hometown is filled with a strong work ethic and religious conviction that was and is the lifeblood of what made America. I have found it invigorating and challenging! Yet, regardless of what it is called, it has proven time and time again to have risen from the ashes of conflict, disappointment and/or setback like a Phoenix with majestic dignity. Like the trees and mountains on the eastern horizon we’ve stood through many seasons. Each season passes and we find ourselves standing taller and prouder than before.

Chillicothe, Ohio possesses the kind of inner self reliance that just radiates. As I review the history of this region I find it is as much a part of our historic DNA as the trees and mountains that grace our horizon. We are a proud part of that region known to cling to our religion and guns as these have reinforced our faith and our resilience. Like the trees around us, regardless the season, we continue to stand tall with the determination to succeed.

Catch the Vision of Possibilities

H. R. Grimm

Saturday, October 24, 2009

"Freedom to Disagree - Think of the Possibilities"

Freedom to Disagree – Think of the Possibilities.

The leaves are in their last days of autumn’s colorful majestic splendor. The weather reports their departure is down to a predictable timetable. Oh, there will be a few that hang on but the majority will be leaving us soon. We might not like this change but we’ve been through this before and we’ll endure this again.

And so it will be with this current political season. Every year there is some issue that demands our attention. The political climate changes like the seasons when the winds of disagreement threaten to rearrange the status quo.

Once this political season is past so the political signs will come down and the rhetoric will fall into the background of our daily lives. We will continue being the same people we have always been regardless of the outcome of the voting. We will find some of our opinions are main stream and some are not. We will find our convictions are shared by the majority and some are not. There are things worth taking a stand as unmovable and our American history is filled with those times. Thank the Good Lord those times are few and far between.

Here in Chillicothe Ohio we have some issues that have riled some of us. Like any community some of us speak our mind without all the polished rhetoric of professional politicians. They just say it the way they mean it and you don’t have to wonder if they have a hidden agenda. That’s the pleasure of living in a rural community, people say what they mean and appreciate that direct honesty. Like I said, they don’t have a hidden agenda, they have a point to make and they want elected officials to lay all the cards on the table so they can see what’s going on. If there’s a doubt, they’ll tell you and everybody else.

You get to know people that way. They don’t change their colors just to please someone or a political party. It’s their conviction and they own what’s their’s. The great thing is that it provides clarity, simplicity and focus. By what I see here in Chillicothe Ohio it is part of our historic DNA to just call it what it is.

Well, the political leaves, if you will, are in their last few days before Election Day on November 3rd. My hunch is we’re going to get a heavy storm of opinions just before the voting. Oh, there’ll be a few heavy down pourings even after the election but this is to be expected. People who believe in something fervently don’t just stop believing it because someone else doesn’t agree with them. Oh, some might not like this but we’ve been through this before and we’ll endure this again.

That’s the joy and blessing of these United States of America, people disagreeing publicly and fervently. We vote our convictions and our opinions because, quite frankly, we have the freedom to do so and its how things improve for all of us. So, regardless of what other's think or feel, stand your ground in your convictions. We have the Freedom to Disagree – Think of the Possibilities.

H. R. Grimm