Posted On: September 26, 2014
When I met my husband in 2006, I didn’t know anyone in the military. Well that’s not completely true - my father had been in the Army for a short time, but that was before I was born, so it’s hard to count that.
Troy had just recently come home from an 18-month deployment to Iraq when I met him and I wasn’t sure what to think. What I did know was that I really liked this man.
I was quickly introduced to his military family and spent time at the Armory in NYC. There, I got close to a group of people who would do anything for one another. It was a sense of family that I had never experienced.
In 2008, about 300 soldiers from his unit were deployed. Thankfully, Troy was not one of them. I was part of the Family Readiness Group (FRG) and watched our best friend (my daughter’s godfather), together with some of our closest friends, deploy. I don’t know that we ever felt any sense of peace during that year.
As military wives, we spend a lot of time without our husbands. When Troy would go away for a drill or training, I would wear his dog tags. I would try and find ways to keep him close and knew that other girlfriends and wives were doing the same thing. But, I didn’t love the size of military-issued dog tags, not to mention all the personal information printed on them.
When we set out to create the With You line, I knew I wanted pieces that would specifically honor our military families. We set out to make something elegant, but simple. The Meagan locket, named for Troy's daughter, is just that.
Troy and I also do work with an organization called the American Fallen Soldiers Project run by a couple we love. Phil Taylor is an incredible artist who paints portraits of soldiers killed in action that he and his wife, Lisa, personally deliver to their families. If you’re not familiar with them, please check them out at http://americanfallensoldiers.com. It’s an amazing organization. We hope to find success in our new venture and to be able to give back to organizations like AFSP through sales of our military lockets.
With love, Mikki