Thank You!

I’m not going to lie to you…I hate to lose – at anything. Those of you that have been around the Schrader house during a game night, playing Monopoly or, worse yet, Spoons, or (gasp!) playing kickball in the yard – you know that we play to win. It’s often a really good trait to have and sometimes it really stinks. Today it stinks. But it is not with bitterness that today I say, “I tried.” It is with an extra dose of satisfaction. I’ve told everyone along the way, and it’s every bit as true today, that Julie and I are a team in this thing. We’re a team in everything. And when we started out on this journey, we did it with you in mind. We are finishing it the same way; thinking of you. Only now, we are thinking of how much you have done for us. You have called. You have prayed. You have cooked and you have baked. You have opened your homes and your hearts. You have talked with us; shared with us. You have invited us in from the cold and you have warmed us with your caring. We owe you a debt of gratitude. You won’t see me shrug my shoulders as if to rid myself of a bad experience; no, this experience has taught me that there is no room for a bad taste in my mouth and my head may be held even higher than it was before this journey began. That’s because of you and what you have come to mean to us. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. We are happy that we tried. Even though we did not finish on top in this race, we know that we won. We won because we know so many more great people than we ever could have had we not entered. We won because we were able to voice our common concerns, albeit not on the stage that we had desired. But our voices were heard and we know that because we ran a good, hard race, we made it easier for someone else to try hard next time. This system is ours, it belongs to ‘We the People,’ and I feel that we have taken a positive step toward getting it back. Thanks for your support and I look forward to seeing you soon. -- Marshall