Dear Col. Hubbard,
I can’t believe that I stumbled upon your website. I guess it made sense considering the fact that I Googled “GBU GBA”. I’m brainstorming, trying to come up with a name for my film production company. The first two things I Googled were Soli Deo Gloria and GBU GBA.
I have told literally dozens and dozens of people about the impact you have made on me. Thank you and may God bless you for that. I’m so excited to be able to tell you that after these some 20 years.
Let me back up. I served in the MN ANG 148th FIG in Duluth, MN from 1986-1992. Some time in there, you came and spoke to us at a “Dining In” (or Dining Out… I’m sorry I don’t remember the terminology). You spoke of your captivity, and now you were able to survive the 2420 days. You talked about how our God given abilities were so much more then we could currently fathom.
Just within the last week or so, I, again, was telling someone that you challenged us out of shape, many overweight, weekend warriors – (Though you never implied any of those characteristics…I’m just stating facts). You said that you knew that “Anyone in this room could go home tonight and do 100 push-ups.” To which we collectively, and probably, predictably, responded with many different versions of, “Yeah – right!”
I knew that you really believed what you had just said! Up to that point, in my twenty or so years of life, the greatest number of push-ups that I had ever done in a row hovered around the 30 mark. I’m not sure if it was due to the respect I felt for you as a POW…I, unfortunately, would probably have to guess not…I was a Stupid 20-22 year old!!! I think it must have been that fact that I knew that you knew – we could. I got some that night, went into my bedroom, closed the door, got into a push-up stance and commenced a physical challenge the likes of which I had never put on myself. The first 10-15 were no problem. By 25 I was definitely “Feeling it.” Crossing my personal best, I began to wonder, “Can I really make it?” I would occasionally stop at the top position to suck in a few extra breathes before continuing. Somewhere between 4-8 times my arms gave out on me, leaving me with my face right at the hardwood floor of my bedroom; yet I never broke my push-up position. After a short respite each time, I would push myself from that position back up to the top again, and continue my mission. Upon reaching my objective of 100 push-ups, I collapsed into a puddle of pain for what seemed like an eternity. Actually, I was able to pick myself up, quite proud of my accomplishment. It wasn’t until the next day that my arms became pretty much limp set tight, dangling, useless appendages, which did little more than throb. As I had just said to my friend, the pain went away, but I will never forget the lesson. God has filled us with Everything we need for every situation we will encounter.
Col. Hubbard, I want to whole-heartedly thank you, not only for your service to this incredible country and the huge sacrifice you made for her for 6 ½ years in Viet Nam, but, also, for your willingness to travel around and speak, and encourage and uplift other people, specifically me, with your story of personal struggle and eventual overcoming of some pretty tremendous circumstances. You are a Great American and heroes like you are what make this country great.
I just wanted you to know, I have your signed “Eagle and Statue of Liberty” picture up on my home office wall right now, and it serves as continual encouragement for me everyday. I also need to confess to you that I have made probably a half dozen color copies of the picture and given them to Vets that I really wanted to honor, especially if they were Viet Nam Vets! Along with the picture, I would tell them of your story. I would explain the push-ups that I did. I would tell of the competitions you did with the Navy pilot in the next Cell, “Not bad for a Navy Boy, but I did 985 Sit-ups!” Did you honestly break the world record for jump rope, or was that just me being a naïve kid…? Finally, I would tell them of the tap code and going to sleep at night tapping to your yellow countrymen, “GBU GBA.”
I’m sorry for the extremely long email, but I just started typing and a lot just poured out of me. Thank you again, for pouring into me some 20 years ago in Duluth. If you have a free minute, I would love to hear back from you.
I pray that the Good Lord would bless you for your faithfulness to this One Nation under God, and grant you His peace, prosperity, and health. Thank you, Sir!
I have been signing my emails like this for a good handful of years now!
GBU & GBA -Bob