The holiday season is a wonderful time for most Americans who gather for family celebrations and remembrances of holidays past, but for those without family, including many U.S. veterans, it is a bittersweet and lonely time.

Army Ranger Sgt. Calvin Corley is one such veteran. Sargent Corley served his country – our country – in Vietnam, where he was exposed to Agent Orange. The effects of the cancer-causing defoliant used liberally by the U.S. military to clear the jungles of Southeast Asia have taken their toll on Sgt. Corley. He is currently receiving hospice care at the Ashville Veterans Hospital in Asheville, North Carolina. Sargent Corley has no family, but his PTSD service dog Roxy remains by his side at all times.

My buddy Mark Starling, who does a morning show at WWNC in Asheville, tells me this is likely Sgt. Corley's last Christmas on Earth and that this hero fears that he has been forgotten. Mark has organized an effort to collect email messages of support and appreciation for Sgt. Corley. Mark plans to print the messages and bind them in a book to be presented to Sgt. Corley before Christmas.

Mark is asking that folks take a moment to send a short email to Sgt. Corley "just letting him know that you are thinking about him this Christmas season."

Sgt. Corley served his country and should not face death alone. Just think, his last act on Earth could be reading a brief message from you telling him that you love and support him.

The email address to write to Sgt. Corley is:

Please, take a moment to wish Sgt. Corley a Merry Christmas and thank him for his service.

Barry Richard is the host of The Barry Richard Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from noon to 3 p.m. Contact him at and follow him on Twitter @BarryJRichard58. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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