In the Coast Guard I got a bunch of awards but the one I wanted more than anything was a Life Saving Medal. They are issued in gold and silver. The silver one is for risking your own life to save another. I never got one.

When I was in the hospital coming out of the coma there was a box next to my bed. I am using my brain for the first time in a month and it doesn’t work completely. I asked the nurse what is the box? She said, that’s you. I asked her again and she said the same thing, that's you. I was in the bed, but I could reach the box, so I did. I opened it and it was full of greeting cards and I mean full (like 100). I pulled one out and read it. It thanked me for saving a life. I did it again and again it thanked me for saving life every time. There were some of them I could kind of remember but my brain doesn’t work yet, no long-term memory. This went on for an hour or so, like a hundred cards. Some would thank me for giving them life back. They were living a weird life and I got them back on track. One card was from a father thanking me for saving his daughter in the surf. The way he wrote it I knew it was me for what I did and said. After I got her breathing again, he said you weren’t done.  You had to get her to the medical facility and God forbid anyone who got in your way, you were quite direct. At the end of his write up he said, you are the reason she lives today. That box of cards meant the world to me. I don’t have it today but should I have gotten a Life Saving Medal from the Coast Guard. Yes, many times. In the Coast Guard your Commander must know and submit you for one. Mine never did. For a lot of it I was a Special Agent and my Commander didn’t know, I was kind of a secret.