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TEAM NEVER QUIT

i never ever take for granted the people God chooses to put in my path

on my journey of photography.

i’m very serious.

if i’ve ever taken your photo

you should know that i drive away thinking about our interaction.

hopefully, about the fun we had and the story i’m going to tell….

I think about the thing that really spoke to me about you and what God is trying to show me through you.

I drive home feeling inspired.

 this meeting was no different and yet it was completely different.

all began when my junkin’ sistas at Junk Gypsy

asked me to shoot a project they did To be included

in their new and upcoming super-amazing-fabulous-terrific book.

The project was a desk for a very special American, Marcus Luttrell.

I don’t want to give away the deets on this special story so you’ll just have

swoon over the this teaser pic till the book comes out,

sweet Mr. Rigby included free of charge.

so I took a couple shots and Marcus’s wife Melanie,

the sweetest southern girl bright shiny smile and long cowgirl hair included,

and we started talking about Round Top and all the fun there.

VERY obvious to see why Marcus fell head over heals for her– she’s such a genuine person

and someone you could talk to for hours.

She doesn’t know this but she’s  my new bff

(don’t worry i don’t have time to stalk you melanie 😛 not right now at least ).

i digress.

So after we got to speaking about this and that Melanie explained that

they were in need of having Marcus’ product line TEAM NEVER QUIT photo’d.

next thing i know my weekend plans were changed and i was thrilled.

i have some confessions to make.

i don’t keep up well on big current events.

i don’t watch a lot of tv (unless it’s recorded and even then).

i don’t watch too much news.

i don’t read many books (sad i know).

i don’t watch movies that involve high action, violence, heart pumping disasters.

i can’t take the anxiety….yes I’m a delicate flower and that’s ok mostly.

I say all this b/c i want you to understand how it could be that i was not more familiar

with the story of Marcus Luttrell, the author of Lone Survivor.

don’t get me wrong.

when i showed up of the shoot, i was  aware of who he was.

but there was so much more i didn’t know.

Melanie was so generous to give me a couple copies to read

to which I’m proud to say I’m on page 19 (hey i’ve been editing like mad!)

and I’m already loving the hearing the story through Marcus’ “voice” in the book.

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since i knew i’d be coming back just a few days later, i really wanted to

understand what Team Never Quit was about.

Obviously, i couldn’t read the book in just a few days so i caved and watched the movie

which i already had on iTunes.

everyone says the book is much better than the movie

and i can’t even imagine how that will be.

i bawled my eyes out.

like worse than a chick-flick bawling.

like worse than steel magnolias or terms of endearment.

i just couldn’t believe what marcus had lived through and what his fellow soldiers

endured in operation Red Wing.

of course i don’t want to be responsible for any spoilers

but here’s one thing i learned from this chance meeting.

i learned that i am selfish.

i can’t believe how selfish i am to say that “i don’t watch violent movies”

or “i don’t have time to read” and in the interim miss and not take in

what our military lives through and dies for all in the name of our freedom.

Don’t get me wrong- i’ve always had HUGE respect for military.

but this is a new enlightenment.

this is mourning and acknowledging what they have done and

are still doing every single day for all of us and allowing myself to take that in.

this is what Im learning in the short time i’ve began this journey.

I hope to understand more…even if it’s uncomfortable to hear about,

gives me anxiety, or makes me bawl my eyes out.

WE NEED TO CRY FOR OUR SOLDIER and

WE NEED TO PRAY FOR OUR SOLDIERS.

melanie and her super-star assistant in charge of lots of things, kristen,

chose the most fabulous gorgeous girls ever for our lifestyle/product shoot.

not only did they make my job easy bc they were total eye candy

but they were the sweetest girls too!

we had amazing amazing california amazing weather.

it was a suitable perfect day to photo Team Never Quit.

and before i get 2000 emails….these and more lovely shirts will be available at

Home

VERY shortly.

The Luttrell’s son Hunter who is handsome and very respectful young man.

He was in the middle of getting his senior photos done and was nice enough to

model a couple things for us.

hard to believe this girl’s never modeled before….

stunning and such a character! personality for days!

marcus’ guide dog, mr. rigby, may look like he’s off duty but

this ole boy worked hard. he helped us out on so many shots

and of course security duty.

this is the most calm dog i have every been around. just love him to pieces.

onto these beauties.

SISTERS!

i told their mom that it’s not fair they have THIS many good looking kids in one family.

Meet Alex…not only is she strikingly gorgeous but she does make up.

she did all the sisters’ make up and it was flawless.

these sisters really were something special.

they were all on the same team and very supportive of each other.

helping each other to look their best and relax for the camera…

it really warmed my heart to see such sweet sister love.

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mr. rigby wanting to show off his ASSets too.

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then we had marcus come in for some shots.

his son Axe showed off his awesome modeling skills….

and this lip-biting….where did he learn THAT so young!?

god bless these little girls. they don’t have  a chance.

as much fun as it all was….THIS was my favorite part of the shoot.

seeing marcus with his kids.

so much love and so natural…an very good balance of love and being a dad.

then came miss addie.

goodness gracious this just made my heart full.


3 years old and not to be outdone by brother…Addie soooo adorable & crazy smart. 

look at these little cherub faces.

i actually felt a little choked up taking these pics

thinking of the blessings that God has blessed

Marcus with in his beautiful, wife (who was making all this happen behind the scenes)

and then blessed them both with these sweet angels plus their big brother.

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i hope this is displayed at her wedding one day!

they’ll be each other’s first BFF’s.

then marcus had to run off to a speaking commitment.

 

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and i got to meet this special lady, Holly Luttrell, aka mama luttrell.

if you ever get a chance to hear her speak or just look for her on you tube for an interview…

she is the sweetest lady (And get a load of that amazing hair). She just has a loving spirit about her. i love people like that.

so much respect for you beautiful ms holly and these hands which I know have made good use of praying countless nights for her sons, wiped away many tears, and clapped with great joy too.

we were modeling the shirts but the bracelets were not put on for this photo.

this is real every day life for the luttrell family.

reminding us to Remember Everyone Deployed (RED friday).

it’s such a little thing to do but speaks so loudly to those who are listening

and even to those who need to listen more like me.

our veterans and their families need this support and to know they are loved.

we owe them so much.

In the end there’s this poem.

This is what came to mind after learning about marcus’s story.

I think it captures the epitome of what Team Never Quit is about and reminds me of Marcus.

I am so grateful that this opportunity presented itself in my life.

I feel like i’ve gained so much wisdom in such a short time…

learning the story of marcus and his brothers,

meeting his brave wife and all that she is,

seeing the light in his kids’ eyes,

seeing that that light remains even after the dust have settled….

it’s a lot to reflect on and take in

and i will be forever grateful.

we must never quit.

god bless our servicemen.

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

-Dylan Thomas

 

C O N T A C T