Our Patriot’s Journey

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Robert’s journey to Washington, DC and the White House began at the NC Governor’s Mansion in Raleigh, NC.  We were there to attend an event for the families of fallen NC military members and left the card.  These email exchanges show how, with the help of many hands, Robert’s trip to the White House came about.

First .... a photographer handed Robert’s card to a woman he felt could get the card to “a special place;”

December 10, 2009 --

I happened upon your son’s card at the NC Governor’s mansion last night when I was photographing the Christmas decorations.  It touched my heart.  What a wonderful way to continue your son’s legacy.  I don’t have any family members that are currently in the war, and finding the card has made it very personal to me.  I wanted to make sure I got the card to the most special place I could possibly get it to.  I am sending with a friend to the White House.  She promises to leave it there for me on our behalf.  I hope you are able to find solace in the thought that the memory of Robert will be with me and many others forever.

K.W., Raleigh, NC

 The photographer’s friend didn’t look at it right away, but when she did, she forwarded it to her husband to start things moving forward -- it starts with the first email and moves on through several until Robert’s mission was complete:

----- Original Message -----
From: E.C.                                               To:  G.C.                                                             

I just looked at the card. It was placed on a table at the Governor's Mansion by his parents:  Brian and Mary Wheat, Jacksonville, NC

Could you please forward this to J.T.

 

------Original Message------
Forwarded from: G.C.
To: J.T.
Subject: Fw: Robert Bittiker

FYI

 

----- Original Message -----
From: J.T.
To: M.I.
Subject: Fw: Robert Bittiker

Sir;

Several weeks ago the Governor hosted an event in the Governor’s Mansion recognizing families of fallen soldiers.  The photographer covered the event and found a small card on a table recognizing that the event was special, and that Sgt. Bittiker would have recognized it as a special event and place, and asked the recipient of the card to take it to another special place. 

The photographer gave it to E.C.  She kept it with her, and a few days later passed it to a friend who is a policy advisor to the President.  The card is now in the White House.  I thought it fitting we let Brian and Mary Wheat know that Sgt. Bittiker's card, and memory, has found a home in a special place where his service and sacrifice may long endure.

Regards

J.T.

----- Original Message -----
From: W.I.
To: J.T.

Subject: Re: Robert Bittiker

J,

I'm especially pleased that Sgt Bittiker found his way to the White House.

I'm sure Brian and Mary will be delighted. There is a wonderful story that goes with the photo and Robert's travel around the country. Thank you for sharing this with me.

Merry Christmas!

 

----- Original Message -----
From: J.T.
To: Brian and Mary Wheat

Dear Brian and Mary,

Was good to see you last Sunday with Governor Perdue. In case you haven't heard the latest on Robert's photograph's journey...   I wish you a peaceful Holiday Season.

W.I

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Cards at other locations in Washington, DC:

Arlington National CemeteryPresident Kennedy’s Grave; Mount Vernon; On 8th Grade Trip

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