I haven’t been writing about this because I didn’t want to “play favorites” or, by raising up some appear to be lowering others, but I can’t keep my mouth shut. (Never have been able to, but I’m sure that all of you know by now). Besides, I’m so humbled by being in your company, by being part of all of this that I just have to share. But I won’t share names. Those of you who did, did, and you know who you are. And, on behalf of a brother and his wife, I’m eternally thankful to you.
You remember our friend Roguetek’s struggles, of course. I know you do.
First off, the response to the collection effort was fantastic. I know that all of us are hurting now, yet your efforts, as has always been the case in the past, did this whole community credit. Not me, not anybody in particular, all of you. I was amazed at what rolled in and that I was able to pass on, and that was only what passed through this site. I know that many of you contributed in other ways.
Second, there’s an LC among us who described himself as a “lurker”, which is to say an LC who doesn’t comment but is nevertheless as much a part of us as any of us blabbermouths, who felt himself moved by Rogue’s plight to the point where he gathered up himself and a whole bunch of friends and went to Rogue and his wife’s home and decided that, heck no, no brother of ours is going to have to live like that. He and his crew have been working on that project ever since and, from what I’ve learned, they’ve done a lot of good. Boots on the ground and all that. And your generous contributions have helped too.
My only point here is that I am so immensely, so eternally proud of all of you. You have never, ever failed to come through in any which way you could for somebody in need, and you embody all of that which I am so proud of as an adopted American, so honored to have been welcomed into this community of the best people I’ve ever known. You constantly remind me of what makes our beloved nation great, and you also remind me of just how lucky, how privileged I am to be able to call myself an American.
Becoming a citizen of this great nation is among the greatest gifts that has ever been bestowed upon me. And don’t get me wrong, I am fiercely proud of my heritage and the nation that gave me birth and raised me. But I am also in awe of what becoming an American has added to that. I have become a better person, I’m learning how to become even better every day, and I owe that all to you, my beloved, honored countrymen.
And the lessons that have really stuck with me was not when you pitched in for me, although that has humbled me too many times to count as well, it was when you pitched in for others and allowed me to be a part of that effort, however small. It was US. As it will always be. Because that is what and who we are. Rogue is just one example. There will be more, I know it, and there have been others. But we’re all in it together and if that’s all I have to put on my headstone when I graduate to the Other Side, then it will have been enough. More than enough.
Thank you for that.
— Emperor Misha I
Emperor of all of the known universe and outlying counties and, most of all:
G-d bless our great nation, and may we continue to be worthy of His blessings, come what may.