Our son Philip called us on July 24 with news that would change our family forever: Next month he will be inducted into the U.S. Air Force as a second lieutenant.
For a family, having a child get to serve this country is life-altering. My wife, Debbie, daughter, Anna, and I are button-popping proud of Philip.
I am also relieved by the knowledge that Debbie and I made the right commitment to our kids when they were just ages 8 and 2.
We were about to uproot them from their comfortable lives in Westchester County, N.Y., to bring them to where we felt would be the best place in the country to raise them. In New York terminology, this was "a pretty gutsy move."
Our neighbors wanted to know why we would leave the advantages offered by a world-class city.
I always knew I would have to face whether it was the right thing to do when we chose the town our children would grow up in instead of letting family tradition dictate that.
I wondered if one day God would give us a sign that we made the correct decision. After all, growing up in an affluent New York City suburb was going to be very different from being raised in a small southwestern town.
It is nice to be able to look back on the years since we moved here in 1996 and think of all the folks we have met while raising our family.
All of you would be a part of how I would answer the question of whether moving here to get a life instead of settling for the New York lifestyle was really worth it for our children.
The answer, of course, is yes.
Philip's induction ceremony will be held at the Air Force Memorial, which overlooks Arlington Cemetery outside Washington D.C. That's where Philip is beginning his second year at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Health Sciences.
Thanks to everyone in our community who helped care for and educate our son, who will in turn be caring for our military servicemen and servicewomen - the true heroes of our country.
Enjoy the journey,
The Oro family - Bob, Debbie, Philip (CDO 2006) and Anna (CDO 2012)
On StarNet: Read Bob Oro's recent columns at azstarnet.com/boboro
Email Bob Oro at firstname.lastname@example.org