TODAY is World Wide Pray for Solaratov Day

4dccaad37f2dd396cda9885c477e8959As we discussed here and here over the last few days, we will be praying today, very shortly, for our Buddy Solaratov as he heals up from cancer surgery.  He made it back from his tours in Vietnam, but now he’s wounded and needs our help.  We’ve all been praying for him individually, and we’ve sent him some gun magazines as discussed in this thread, but here’s an opportunity for all of us, distributed quite literally around the world, to say a prayer for his strength, healing and consolation.  Here’s the plan:

At the moment indicated below for your location: (coming up soon!)

Australia: 12am-midnight (in case Aussie sees this in time)
Hawaii: 4am
Denver: 8am
Houston/Minneapolis: 9am
Indy/Florida/Virginia/WDC: 10am
Zurich: 4pm
Chenai: 7:30pm

We will each, in his own way, begin a prayer for Sol.  Most of us have agreed that we will be saying the same prayer for the first few minutes, but you can feel free to say whatever you like in your own prayer.  The prayers suggested by Shalini and Grunt and agreed upon by the others are:

The Lord’s Prayer
Reading of Psalm 31 (click here for the text of these prayer/psalm)

That’s it!  If you can, please consider spending a few minutes at this precise moment today, Friday, April 25th, wherever you are around the world, to pray for Solaratov in his pain and suffering. We encourage anyone who knows Sol or has blogged with him since the discussions at HillBuzz in 2009 or at the HoneyTrail or the Conservative TreeHouse around 2010 or here at 4GFC over the last few years, to do this. Even if you’re a lurker and have never commented on these blogs but have enjoyed Sol’s commentary, please join in.

Thank you!  But don’t panic if this time has passed today.  Any prayers you wish to offer for Sol’s healing and strength will be greatly appreciated by us and by Solaratov himself.  God bless you!


About GruntOfMonteCristo

Fearless and Devout Catholic Christian First, Loving Husband and Father Second, Pissed-Off Patriot Third, Rocket Engineer Dork Last.
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147 Responses to TODAY is World Wide Pray for Solaratov Day

  1. Thanks for checking in this morning (afternoon), ZMike! Glad to have you on board!

  2. Good Morning all. I would like to start this day with a song.

  3. freedom1781 says:

    I’m ready!!

    BTW, I mailed a get well card to him this morning. The lady at the p.o. put a Buzz Lightyear stamp on it. 😆 My DD thought that was funny. If I would have let DD seal the envelope there would have been nothing but stickers on the back of it. Flower stickers, Mickey Mouse stickers, My Little Pony stickers, Strawberry Shortcake stickers…!!!

  4. Dear Father in Heaven look not upon our sins or shortcomings but in Thy Great Mercy hear the prayers of Your Faithful who gather in Your Name for the sake of our Dear Brother Sol.

  5. Knight4GFC says:

    Aloha Kakahiaka!

    Today we come together in Our Lord’s Holy Name in spiritual arms to fight for Brother Solaratov. For God, Family, and Country! For Solaratov! God Bless us all!

  6. I see some traffic from France over the last few minutes. Did French Reader make it in time for the prayers? If so, thank you! I apologize that I forgot to include the specific time for your time zone, which I think is the same as Greenwich Zulu time. I know you’re completely aware of your time difference from Zurich, though. Bon après-midi!

  7. Harvey says:

    That was lovely. I think the whole hospital must have glowed with your prayers.

  8. Knight4GFC says:

    The Lord is my shepherd,
    I shall not want.

    He makes me lie down in green pastures;
    He leads me beside quiet waters.

    He restores my soul;
    He guides me in the paths of righteousness
    For His name’s sake.

    Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
    I fear no [e]evil, for You are with me;
    Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.

    You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
    You have anointed my head with oil;
    My cup overflows.

    Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life,
    And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

  9. Knight4GFC says:

    He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
    Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.

    I will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress,
    My God, in whom I trust!”

    For it is He who delivers you from the snare of the trapper
    And from the deadly pestilence.

    He will cover you with His pinions,
    And under His wings you may seek refuge;
    His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

    You will not be afraid of the terror by night,
    Or of the arrow that flies by day;

    Of the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
    Or of the destruction that lays waste at noon.

    A thousand may fall at your side
    And ten thousand at your right hand,
    But it shall not approach you.

    You will only look on with your eyes
    And see the recompense of the wicked.

    For you have made the Lord, my refuge,
    Even the Most High, your dwelling place.

    No evil will befall you,
    Nor will any plague come near your tent.

    For He will give His angels charge concerning you,
    To guard you in all your ways.

    They will bear you up in their hands,
    That you do not strike your foot against a stone.

    You will tread upon the lion and cobra,
    The young lion and the serpent you will trample down.

    “Because he has loved Me, therefore I will deliver him;
    I will set him securely on high, because he has known My name.

    “He will call upon Me, and I will answer him;
    I will be with him in trouble;
    I will rescue him and honor him.

    “With a long life I will satisfy him
    And let him see My salvation.”

  10. Knight4GFC says:



    We pray for blessings, we pray for peace.
    Comfort for family, protection while we sleep.
    We pray for healing, prosperity.
    We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering.

    All the while, You hear each spoken need.
    Your love is too way too much to give us lesser things.

    Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops?
    What if your healing comes through tears?
    What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?

    What if trials of this night, are Your mercies in disguise?

    We pray for wisdom, Your voice to hear.
    We cry in anger when we cannot feel You near.
    We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love.
    As if every promise from Your word is not enough.

    All, the while, You hear each desperate plea.
    And long that we’d have faith to believe.

    Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops?
    What if your healing comes through tears?
    What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?

    What if trials of this night, are Your mercies in disguise?

    When friends betray us, when darkness seems to win;
    We know that pain reminds this heart, that this is not, this is not our home.
    It’s not our home.

    Cause what if your blessings come through raindrops?
    What if your healing comes through tears?
    What if a thousand sleepless nights are what it takes to know You’re near?

    What if my greatest disappointments, or the aching of this life;
    Is a revealing of greater thirst that a world can’t satisfy?

    And what if trials of this life, the rain, the storms, the hardest nights;
    Are Your mercies in disguise?

    • freedom1781 says:

      When I first read about Sol having cancer, this song started playing in my head.

      • Knight4GFC says:

        “…What if my greatest disappointments, or the aching of this life;
        Is a revealing of greater thirst that a world can’t satisfy?

        And what if trials of this life, the rain, the storms, the hardest nights;
        Are Your mercies in disguise?”

        This is a beautiful song. This is the way we should look at our sufferings. God’s will be done, not ours. God is good and He knows what we need to attain eternal salvation.

        • So good of you to bring this up, Knight. This view of suffering. Last night I spent hours on the phone with a close cousin of mine who I’ve consoled through many sufferings. Through it all he’s remained faithful, even during the last year, which was epicly cruel due to a horrible betrayal of someone who should have been trustworthy. His life was essentially ruined. But last night was different. Last night he was gushing with joy because events had finally happened that turned everything on its head. He was finally delivered. He was reunited with his young children who still loved him very much. Those who had tried to destroy him had been revealed and he was exhonerated. More importantly, it was finally obvious that God had been working all along to bring it all about in the background. You should have heard the joy in his voice. That reaffirmation of every scrap of faith he’d ever had. All along he expected to only be delivered in the next life, since this one is so damaged, and we can never know what will happen here. But, in this case, like Job, he was given it all back right here, besides. I’m so glad for him. I know it was not a sure thing. There are so many who get to be martyrs instead, and thank God for them. But cases like this one give me such encouragement.

          • Knight4GFC says:

            Praise God! I am happy to hear that your cousin held on to his faith throughout all the turmoil he endured. Yes, that is an inspiration, just as it is a great inspiration to hear about the martyrs who died with their faith. No two ways about it, GOD IS GOOD. He knows what is best for the salvation of your soul and all the best we can do is have faith in His great Love and Mercy. In doing this, we glorify Him. We follow Jesus Christ’s example. “Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done.” Thank you for sharing this Brother Grunt.

  11. freedom1781 says:

    Of course, I have to put up some Third Day!

    “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” -Joshua 1.9

  12. Knight4GFC says:

    We’ve got your back, Sol!

    • barnslayer says:

      Amen Knight! The Armor of God

      Ephesians 6:10-18
      King James Version (KJV)
      10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

      11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

      12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

      13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

      14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

      15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

      16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

      17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

      18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

  13. What A Hoot says:

    Oh, dear. I have been away for awhile; had no idea. Prayers. And more prayers. Magazines of prayers. You are so loved, Sol. And appreciated. May you find a comforting peace in the weeks to come. (And thank you for NOT keeping your reality life and cyber in separate boxes and telling here about your cancer.) Ah, still digesting and comprehending this news; will go back and visit the links mentioned above to get up to speed.

  14. Bad news. We’ve lost track of Sol. I got confirmation that our care package arrived today, but the hospital in St. Louis reports today that he’s been “discharged.” They speculate that he’s been moved to another long-term care or hospice facility which they cannot name. Since he’s under fairly heavy sedation, my guess is that that’s the case. Problem is, I know for a fact that no actual family is even aware of his location – only a neighbor or two and a couple friends, like us. He’s probably being managed by MO Social Services, so we can only hope that he feels good enough to call one of these days.

    • Knight4GFC says:

      Wow… not good. Please continue to keep us informed and we will continue our prayers.

    • Wow, this means we need to continue to pray harder for him! Thank you for the update Grunt. Is there any way for the hospital to send his package to where ever he was released to? It should be protocol to know where they are being discharged to.

      • I do know that the hospital will not (not suppose to anyhow) disclose his whereabouts to non “family” members. It might be best if you could try to get the package forwarded (by the same carrier) by the hospital to wherever he went. And TRACK it! Is that an option?

        • barnslayer says:

          How about Tex calling like he’s Sol’s attorney or something?

          • You trying to get Tex in trouble? If we’re going to do that, we should at least have him go big and impersonate Obama or someone even higher up, like Oprah. 😀

            • barnslayer says:

              I was just figuring if someone claimed to be his accountant, lawyer etc. with important papers for him to sign it might work. I thought Tex was a lawyer.

        • That’s a good idea, and I’ll pursue that with guest services when they open in the morning, but I don’t think it can be tracked now, since UPS delivered it and confirmed. But maybe the hospital will get careless. Who knows.

          • Harvey says:

            Maybe someone on staff would be willing to contact Sol at his new location and get his permission to tell you where he is?

            • Hmmmm. That would entail getting someone much more helpful than I’ve encountered so far. But the guest services folks might actually go out on that limb. They’ve been fairly helpful so far, and I’ve already been a customer a couple of times, so I’ll give it a shot. Thanks, Harvey!

  15. MRM says:

    Just now checking in after a long day. I was there with all y’all this morning (EDT) for our prayer, and still holding the belief in its power. I’m sorry to hear that we’ve lost track of Sol, but at peace knowing that God has not.

  16. More bad news: The hospital will probably not forward our care package at all. I’ll find out for sure on Monday, but it looks very much like we might just get it back in the mail.

  17. Care Package Update:
    Despite me talking directly to the guys at the hospital shipping/receiving dock over the last few days and trying to prevent the package being sent back, they managed to sneak it back to UPS this morning at 9am and refuse delivery, even though the addressee is right there on their campus waiting for it. I then talked to UPS, who confirmed that they had it on its way back to Denver, and I was able to request a redelivery to the correct building. It might take a miracle, but it could get to him in by the weekend.

    Harvey, if it’s sent back, it won’t get here in time for you to hand-carry it. Also, there’s no way to request a hold there for you to pick up. So you’re off the hook. Have a good trip!

    • zmalfoy says:

      . . . *sigh* .. .

      Well, I’m still just so relieved he was found. Been prayin up a storm, harassing angels and saints and being a real brat on Sol’s behalf. . . on the well-established theory that if I annoy God enough, He’s got to cave on something, right? 😛 (Sadly, this only works when I pray for something for others. Never when I’m whining about something for myself. . . actually, that’s probably a good thing. . . 😉 )

    • Harvey says:

      It’s OK, he’ll still get some stuff this weekend 🙂

      • Awesome! Just be careful out there. I’ve overheard him flirting with the nursing staff over the phone, and it’s not a pretty thing. I know you’re a big girl and all, but make sure he knows you’re married, and then whack him on the knees with your umbrella if he gets fresh. I did overhear that he’s having knee pain, so that’s a good place to hit him if necessary. 🙂 If it gets really bad, we’ll replace ALL of his magazines with Oprah magazines. Good luck!

        (Actually, I’m just kidding around. Sol is very respectful to the staff and there are a lot of “yes, ma’ams” and such. I was mainly thinking of the times he would pause the conversation with a “Hang on, I have to talk to this very attractive young woman who’s patiently waiting…”)

  18. MRM says:

    So happy that our prayers are effective and ongoing! I’m finding that 10 am eastern is a bit of a problem for me most days as our business day starts at 10 sharp. I’m chiming in a little early and hoping the energy carries over into the 10 o’clock joint prayer. some days I’m still able to pray along with all y’all at 10… others I have to bail early and just hold the intention. My faith is in the concept that outside our realm, there is no space or time and prayer is eternal…

    • Well, I suggest that we officially move up the time by 15 minutes if that’s agreeable. Not everyone may be continuing to do this every day, and that’s fine, but for those who are, let’s go with t-minus-15 from now on. I’ll go at 7:45am.

  19. Shalini says:

    I am so sorry I couldn’t log in on Friday. 😦 It was my wedding anniversary and we were taking family out to dinner. Though I did say my prayers along with you all at the allotted time (my husband and everybody else very kindly agreed to push the table booking timings by another half an hour), I couldn’t be online like I would have liked!

    Also, Grunt, if there’s anything I could do, with regards o another care package you guys may have planned, can you let me know soon? Though I still have another 9 weeks till d-day, I may be less active in the coming weeks given all my ultrasounds and doc appointments. Also, I could send the “God calling” to Sol if you could mail me the address.

    • Dear Shal, I’m sorry this had an impact on your anniversary. Gruntessa and I were just discussing on Friday when your anniversary was, since it’s so close to our daughter’s. At the time, we had wanted to at least write a post to honor your first year of marriage, but I’ve been so preoccupied with everything else that I forgot. Sorry about that! Please accept our belated anniversary wish, and I hope our blog drama hasn’t affected your family other than the half hour adjustment last week! Also, please don’t worry about Sol. You have more to worry about right now. We’ll be praying for your delivery-day also! I’m going to try to get my copy of God Calling to him on your behalf. 🙂

      • Shalini says:

        Oh no no! Don’t apologise!! There was no issue at all!! Praying for a dear friend in need is always way more important than any celebration and my family fully understands that!! 🙂 Thank you for your prayers and wishes!! And my belated wishes to your DD! 🙂

    • Shalini, Congratulations on #1. may God Bless you with many many more to come. And may both of you be blessed with many little “Shalings” and the joy from the patter of little feet!

    • Knight4GFC says:

      Oh my! Wow, time flies.

      Sister Shalini, I wish you and your husband a very blessed and happy anniversary!

      I pray that our heavenly Father, in the Name of His Son, Jesus Christ, and through the intercession of His holy mother Mary, that He protects you and your family from all harm and evil. May He keep you and your family together in His Hands all the days of your life. Amen.

  20. Solaratov walking and emailing today:
    Begin EMAIL——————————————
    I’m up and getting semi-mobile. Still a lot of pain and uncoordination. Stuff I used to do without thinking requires major effort..
    My tentative release date is 22May…but I don’t know if I’ll be going home or to a rehab unit in [local Missouri town].

    Thank everyone for the massive prayers that they sent up for me. It made me cry when you told me about the world-wide Novena.

    I am having truoble logging on to 4gfc. Send the exact address, OK.

    I was just outside for the first time…and took a look at all that I almost lost. Things are going to change, Grunt. I know that. I just have t be able to change along with them.

    I’m signing off now. This takes more energy than I remember.

    My love, thanks and prayers to my brothers and sisters in Christ. Solaratov
    ps; I’ve been asking about that box you sent – but no joy so far. Has it been returned to you yet?
    End EMAIL——————————————–

  21. Knight4GFC says:

    Get Well Soon Solaratov! God Bless! 🙂


  22. Saturday morning message:
    Well. I’m still more upright than down. And I’m making some progress as far as getting a bit of strength back. And I’ve still got periods od “confusion” (to put it politely). Of course, I’ve still got a long road of radiation and chemo ahead of me. I’ll find out what all of that entails on monday. For the most part, the docs – when you get to see them – let you know what is going to happen.
    I’m going to have to make a lot of major changes in my life, though…and even a lot of little things are going to have to change.
    It’s probably going to be a while before I even get to go live on my own, too. I’m going to have to find some way to buy a newer trailer and have it mounted on my lot. I’m not going to be able to use wood as the main heat, for instance. Just as backup. Stuff like that.
    I AM going to survive this thing, though. It’s just going to take some time. And, I’ve got the feeling that the rough stuf hasn’t really even started yet.
    As soon as I get back into a pernanent abode though, I am going to start the “prepper” blog that I’ve been thinking of. Things like that.

    I have just been outside; and it’s pretty nice. Everytime I go out, I have to stop and take a look at what I almost lost – and thank God for keeping me around a little longer. I guess I’ve got a little more to do.

    As of this morning, the box still hasn’t showed up. I’ll drop you a line as soon as it does.

    I want to thank all of my brothers and sisters at 4gfc again. For your prayers and good wishes…and just for being a parts of my life.

    I’ll write again soon. It seems to take a lot out of me – right now – to try to concentrate and write for very long. Plus, the back starts acting up when I sit in one position too long.

    Everybody take care of yourselves…and each other.


    • barnslayer says:

      Grunt, thanks for keeping us in the loop. I will continue to pray for Sol.

    • Knight4GFC says:

      Thanks for the update Grunt!

      Brother Solaratov, you are most welcome. We will continue to pray that you have a speedy return to health. Thank you for sharing your status with us in this ongoing battle of yours. As daunting as your fight may sound, it seems you still have your boots on. God obviously does have a reason for keeping you around a little longer. We, here at 4GFC, got your back! Stand tall. May Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ give you the Grace, Strength, and Courage to keep fighting!

      I’m sure you will have many battles ahead. When, in the toughest fights, the darkest times, wounded, weary, you feel like giving up, and you are certain that you are alone, I pray that you find our Savior standing next to you. May your ordeals be for the greater Glory of Christ the King. God be with you. Courage! God bless you Solaratov! For God, Family, and Country!

  23. Today the family of GFC will offer up our Sunday Servises for our Dear Brother Sol. You are our refuge O God, in whom alone we Trust!
    Have a Blessed Day Sol! Thank you for your service to this country and giving us the honor of praying for you!

    Psalm for the Sick

    O Lord, in your anger punish me not; in your wrath chastise me not. For your arrows have sunk deep in me; your hand has come down upon me. There is no health in my flesh because of your indignation; there is no wholeness in my bones because of my sin. For my iniquities have overwhelmed me; they are like a heavy burden, beyond my strength. Noisome and festering are my sores, because of my folly. I am stooped and bowed down profoundly; all the day I go in mourning. For my loins are filled with burning pains; there is no health in my flesh. I am numbed and severely crushed; I roar with anguish of heart. O Lord, all my desire is before you; from you my groaning is not hid. My heart throbs, my strength forsakes me; the very light of my eyes has failed me. For I am very near to falling; and my grief is with me always. Indeed, I acknowledge my guilt; I grieve over my sins. Forsake me not, O Lord,; my God be not far from me! Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation. Let me know, O Lord, my end and what is the number of my days, that I may learn how frail I am. A short span you have made my days, and my life is as nought before you; only a breath is any human existence. Hear my prayer, O Lord, to my cry give ear; to my weeping be not deaf! For I am but a wayfarer before you, a pilgrim like all my fathers. Turn you gaze from me that I may find respite, ere I depart and be no more. Taken from Psalms 37 and 38

  24. Package Update: After about 2 weeks of trying to deliver our care package to Sol at both of his 2 hospital locations, UPS has given up and sent the package back to my home UPS store. It’s still in transit, but the store will call me when it’s here. After that, I’m not sure what to do with it. Harvey had no trouble finding him over the last few days and apparently spent some good time with him hanging in the courtyard of the extended care facility there. I will probably ask one of the nurses to allow me to send it to her directly, and see if that works.

    • Hey grunt, does that mean if we send him a package to that last address he won’t gett it??

      • Not necessarily. The nurses gave me that address as his correct mailing address, and I might try it again, myself. UPS has not been very clear about how hard they tried to deliver it to that address, since they were really only obligated to deliver to the first address. After that, they accepted my “request” to redeliver, and said they would, but then returned it to me without explanation. They may have decided it was just going to cost them extra money and bailed. It may still work with a fresh package. I guess we’ll find out.

  25. Package Update: It’s officially lost. UPS thinks it’s in Denver … somewhere, but the trace turns up nothing. They’ve asked me to fill out a claim for a lost parcel. I will try to put another package together, and this time, Sol says he needs clothes. Working on that…

    • barnslayer says:

      Sizes? Types?

      • Some kind of loose-fitting cargo pants were requested, size 30W-30L. Also, pocket tee shirts. Probably size M or L.

        • barnslayer says:

          How can we get this to Sol? Do you have a reliable address?

          • He’s pretty convinced that the address we’ve got right now is a good one, but if you want to wait to confirm, I’ve got a new package on its way now. It should be there in 2 days or so. I just sent 3 tee shirts, a pair of jeans, a ball cap, magazines, some girl scout cookies, etc. One thing I forgot, though, is to send some cash. If anybody can send him a $20 for incidentals, he’d appreciate that. Just ask me to email the address.

  26. The care package saga continues. UPS found it. I just picked it up. Looks like it’s got a few miles on it, though. Maybe it got sent to St. Petersburg instead of St. Louis.

  27. Barn, just heard from Harvey, who is there in St. Louis now, that Sol got package #2 without hitch. So, the address is good, but there’s not much time before he’s discharged to some extended care place in his hometown. I’m resending package #1 now, because I think there’s enough time before his discharge date on the 22nd, next week. I’ll go update you with the exact address I used, but the one you have should be good. Anybody else, just ask.

    • What A Hoot says:

      How does our family send something to Sol? Wait it out until know more extended address? It is a blessing for us that Sol is making his needs known.

      • I think we need to wait until next week to see where he ends up at this point, since we’re so close to his May 22 transition date. Harvey just got home from a visit, and has talked to him more recently than I have. Do you have any more news, Harve?

  28. Just talked to Sol Wed night (the 21st), and he confirmed that he was moving to a new facility the next day. He’s going to call or email when he’s settled in with new address and phone info.

    Sounds like he’s doing great. He had received all packages and was wearing jeans and t-shirts that we’d sent, and happily munching away on all the goodies from Cabelas. Sounds like he’s not too picky, since the cookies and chocolate and jerky and choco-covered fruit had been in hot trucks driving back and forth on I-70 for about a month, and must have been getting stale.

    He expressed more appreciation for Harvey’s 2 series of visits over the last few weeks. He thinks she’s the greatest thing since pop tarts now, and he is very grateful that she was able to stop by and talk. Great job, Harve!

    Other good news is that Sol has made amazing progress in shrinking the cancerous tumors with the meds they’ve got him on, and so his chances of survival are getting vastly better. Also, he’s in good spirits since the word on the street is that the place he’s going to for treatment is very nice. Good luck, buddy!

    BTW, Sol was very helpful in solving some of the problems I ran into at the Johnson Space Center on Wednesday. I told him that I got to hang out, in between meetings, in the FCR3 in the Chris Craft Mission Control Center, which is the control center you see (probably as a mock up) in Apollo 13. The pic I posted was of the other control room (FCR1, where the ISS flight director sits), which I spent some downtime in, as well. The FCR3 is kept in pretty good museum quality, just like it was in the early Shuttle days and through the Apollo flights, stained carpet and all. But it’s too clean. And I told Sol that it was a HUGE problem that it didn’t reek of cig smoke anymore! There weren’t even any ash trays! We agreed that this inaccuracy was something that just needed to be fixed. So he told me to go back down there and complain to somebody and get that changed. 🙂 Unfortunately, I let him down on that. Nobody listens to me. 😉

  29. Latest email from Solaratov at his new digs in St. Louis. From the sound of the equipment that doesn’t make any noise and the age of the establishment, he may be in one of our finest Civil War-era VA hospitals. Items in brackets are place names I have generalized for privacy:

    The radiation treatments are going fine. I’ve had four so far, and six more to go. Thus far, I haven’t been made nauseous by the treatments. It’s sort of odd, though. The machine is almost totally silent…so one doesn’t actually know whether or not it’s doing anything. They should add some bells and whistles so that you can believe it’s working. I just take their word that it’s doing what it’s supposed to do. At least, they go hide behind the lead walls while I’m on the table.

    When I finish the treatments, I’m >supposed< to be going to [local treatment facility] for the balance of my physical therapy; which should be at least another month. I hope that that works out the way we want it to.

    I'm walking a lot better and my balance is getting better. Right now, they have me on a walker instead of in a wheelchair all of the time; and I've started practicing with a cane. By the time I finish the physical therapy, I should be walking pretty well (without staggering like a reprobate drunk) and just using the cane for minor assistance over rough spots.
    Not bad for someone who was supposed to be dead, eh?

    There isn't really any way for you to get hold of me here. (For a place that's been around since 1882, it is rather disorganized) But, when I get to [home town], it should be easier (I hope).

    Say hi to all of the people on 4gfc; and tell them that I still am amazed at their spiritual help. I know that their prayers have had a positive effect for me. (God must be amazed that I have so many people who care about me. ha. ha. 🙂 )

    I'll try to write again and let you know more about what's going on – as soon as I know.


  30. Just got a call from Sol tonight (Saturday). Doing fine and getting good at walking with a cane. We’re still trying to figure out a good daily time and phone number at the nurse’s station to get calls through. It’s still not easy, apparently. He expects to remain at this place for treatments for a few more weeks. Barn, I’ll try to get an address for you.

  31. Haven’t heard from Sol in a while, and I’m pretty sure that’s because he’s in a slump from all the radiation treatment they just gave him. Just wanted to let you know we’re still thinking about you, Buddy. Prayers are continuing, and we’re still hoping for you to recover quickly from this round. Me and Son#2 are working on a pickup truck sprint out there to visit just as soon as we can. Meantime, hang in there.

  32. Harvey says:

    Good to see you were online today, Sol. How’s it going?

  33. Just an update on how Sol is doing:
    Had a long phone conversation last night, Sunday, July 13. He’s just made it home after the latest set of treatments, and he’s actually sounding really good. I didn’t realize how much his back had to be reconstructed, but apparently he’s got so much titanium in him, his scrap value now exceeds his remaining Social Security balance. So, now we have to worry about thieves trying to steal him to cash him in at a salvage yard. Pretty amazing that he’s walking on his own and talking about going shooting soon.

  34. Harvey says:

    Hi, Sol

    Let us know how you are doing when you get a chance.

    • solaratov says:

      Hi, Harvey! So far, so good. I’m still kickin’ – and getting stronger and steadier. I don’t have to use the walker anymore aaaa9except when I do my exercises)…I’m on the cane full-time; and I try to spend as much time as I can NOT using the cane.
      Thanks again for your visit. It was exactly what I needed right then.

  35. solaratov says:

    OK! I finally got my internet connection back; so I can communicate a bit more than I have been.
    You guys have no idea how much I have missed talking with y’all.

    I believe that I am continuing to improve…and that the tumors are continuing to shrink. (Whether they will be killed by the radiation treatments I had and the chemotherapy treatments I am now undergoing, I don’t know). The chemo is a new type and is being given at a different time in my treatment regimen (early in the game rather than later). The results from that are an extra couple of years added to the life expectancy. (I don’t think that the doctors know that I intend to live a lot longer than their estimates…and I am definitely not going to go until I have done whatever God wants me to do [and whatever satan wants to kill me to stop me from doing]. When God says it’s time to go, I’ll go – and not before. It’s ALL in His hands.)

    More later. Lots more! 🙂

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