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Family

He is Risen!

March 26, 2016 | By | No Comments

Sharing a repost from one of our family’s most treasured Easter memories — Over a decade ago now in 2005, we took a trip with all of the children to the Grand Canyon for Sunrise Service on Easter Sunday. At the time, since they were small, I used pseudonyms for each child. Hannah was the Dreamer; John was the Dude; Helena was the Diva; Sarah was the Dancer; and James was Baby Boo. Happy Easter and God’s richest blessings to each of you and your families!

He is risen! He is risen indeed!

The alarm went off at 3 AM. Could we manage to rouse five tired children and make it to the sunrise service at the Grand Canyon 90 miles north? Having come this far on our westward adventure, we wanted to try. But the Penta-Posse got themselves up, into the ski clothes we’d laid out to combat the cold, and beat me into the truck. (They may have been eased along by the chocolate and jelly beans the easter bunny left. . .)

In fact, they were in such high spirits that they wanted our progress up Arizona Rt. 180 through the Coconino Forest to turn into a race with the lone hatchback we encountered along the way in the dark. As the little car left us in his wake (Dad, c’mon, let’s go!!) Jack told the posse that we would let the hatchback “hit the cow” for us and tried to refocus their attention on seeing who could guess how low the temperature would go. The Dreamer “won” when the thermometer dropped to 17 degrees. I worried about the wind-chill on the canyon rim. Then, we crested a hill and came up suddenly on the hatchback, which was stopped dead in front of us as a herd of six or seven deer charged acrosss the road.

The mountains to our right, capped in snow, glowed with the reflected light of a full moon. We reached the canyon at 5 AM just as the faintest light began breaching the eastern rim. We parked along the shoulder near Mather Point; the Dancer had fallen asleep again and didn’t want to venture into the cold — we wrapped her in a blanket and joined the others who were streaming in the direction of haunting music playing on a loudspeaker at the outlook. We were early enough to be among the first there; eventually around 1600 people arrived, filling up the platform, the stairs to the outlook, and lining the rim looking out over Mather Point.

The Dreamer, the Dude and the Diva scrambled up to a perch atop a large boulder, while Jack and I settled in to lower seats along a rocky wall with the Dancer and Boo. By now, a faint pink light was spreading along the horizon. We had made it! My eyes filled with tears as my apprehension and tension from the press to get there was replaced with a sense of awe at the majesty in front of me.

Then the cold started to seep in. The Dancer started to cry. She settled in to Jack’s lap and buried her face in his chest. A little later, the Dreamer came down to take her so that they could warm each other. Boo slept on.

Half an hour left until the service and now the light was spreading and we could see the growing crowd around us more clearly. My worst fears about the wind-chill never materialized, but it was very cold. A stranger came over to the Dancer and the Dreamer, and wrapped them in a blanket. “Here,” he said, “you look cold. This is an extra.” It wasn’t an extra. We were among friends.

He is risen. He is risen indeed.

The service started and Boo began to cry. Then he settled quickly into my shoulder. . . The sun broke over the northeastern rim with a brilliant glow, revealing the colors of the canyon in all their glory. Red, green, pink, orange. Deep clefts of darkness and shadow. The Colorado silently running in dizzying depths below. A raw wood cross on the edge appeared to hang in the air, silhouetted with the vast expanse of the canyon behind.

Christ, the Lord, is risen today, Alleluia!

Sons of men and angels say, Alleluia!

Raise your joys and triumphs high, Alleluia!

Sing, ye heavens, and earth, reply, Alleluia!

Hail, the Lord of earth and heaven, Alleluia!

Praise to Thee by both be given, Alleluia!

Thee we greet triumphant now, Alleluia!

Hail, the resurrection day, Alleluia Jesus Christ is risen today, Alleluia!

Our triumphant holy day, Alleluia!

Who did once upon the cross, Alleluia!

Suffer to redeem our loss. Alleluia!

Afterward, the Dude and I stood and looked over the canyon. “This is awesome,” he said.

He is risen. He is risen, indeed.

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Originally published on March 28th, 2005.

John Wesley Yoest III, Student Athlete Baseball Curriculum Vita

June 1, 2012 | By | No Comments

John Wesley Yoest III, Student Athlete, Baseball Curriculum Vita

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High School

Yorktown High School

5200 Yorktown Boulevard

Arlington, Virginia 22207

Phone: 703-228-5400

Class of 2013

Head Coach, Mike Ruck, MikeRuck25 at hotmail dot com

Email: JohnYoest at Gmail dot com

Vitals

Position: Pitcher

Height: 6′ 1″

Weight: 190 lbs

GPA: 3.85 cumulative

ACT: na

SAT: 1870; Reading 640, Math 620, Writing 610

Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) Summary Results 1 May 2012, Percentile Scores 11th Grade Students

Career Exploration Scores,

Verbal Skills 97
Math Skills 95
Science and Technical Skills 98

ASVAB Tests

General Science 99

Arithmetic Reasoning 90

Word knowledge 97

Paragraph Comprehension 94

Mathematics Knowledge 97

Electronics Information 96

Auto and Shop Information 66

Mechanical Comprehension 98

Military Entrance Score (AFQT) 94

Standards of Learning:

Algebra, Pass/Advanced

Chemistry, Pass/Advanced

World History, Pass/Proficient

Class Rank: Yorktown High does not measure class rank

Senior Year 2013

Elected President of entire High School for upcoming 2013 year

Junior Year 2012

Honors

National Honor Society, Yorktown Chapter

All-Met Spring Honorable Mention, Pitcher 2012

Pitcher of the Year, All National District

First Team, All National District

Second Team All Region, Pitcher (District/Region/State)

Boy’s State Alumnus for Virginia, Elected “Best Citizen” for his city

Selected to attend United States Naval Academy Summer Session

Executive Board, Student Government, for entire high school

Team advanced to second round of Regional Play-offs

Varsity Football

Statistics

ERA: 2.57

Fast Ball speed, live, during game: 86 mph

Strike outs: 91, highest in DC Metro Area, The Washington Post

60 yard dash, Diamond Skills, January 2012: 6.85 seconds

Member of Yorktown Baseball Team record season 21-4.

Member of Yorktown Football Team record season 10-0.

Sophomore Year 2011

Honors

First Team All National District, Baseball (Pitcher) Virginia

Class President

Varsity Baseball

Varsity Football

JV Basketball

Principal’s Award, In Recognition of Your Distinctly Positive Contribution To Our School, Community and School Climate. (Earned by the top seven percent of entire student body; Second Award.)

Virginia High School League, Academic Excellence Award, recognition of outstanding academic achievement while participating in VHSL Interscholastic Activities.

Athletic Honor Roll, Virginia High School League, Northern Region, for achieving a[t least] a 3.50 G.P.A. while participating in Baseball

Statistics

ERA, 3.96, Leading the team in strikeouts 55 facing 168 batters; with 35.34 innings pitched

All Met Sports The Washington Post statistics

Won/Loss: 5-1

Hitting: .333

60 yard dash:

7.00 sec, Timed at U.S. Naval Academy Baseball Leadership Camp, August 2011

7.19 sec, Timed at the Crab Claw Classic, July 2011

Freshman Year 2010

Honors

Class President

Homecoming Prince

JV Baseball

Freshmen Football, Team Captain

Freshmen Basketball

Principal’s Award, In Recognition of Your Distinctly Positive Contribution To Our School, Community and School Climate.

John is always friendly to everyone, is always willing to help others and does so with a cheerful attitude and smile

ERA: 0.79

Eight Grade

One of two eighth graders to make the 22 man Junior Varsity Baseball Squad

ERA: 0.50

One of 60 students out of 1748 nominated for the ROCS (Respect Others Community and Self) Goals of Community Behavior June 2011 Sophomore Year

Virginia Baseball Club, Camp Counselor, Intern, Summer 2010, Arlington, Virginia

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Self-Defense Yellow Belt, 2nd Degree, April 23, 2004

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National District Champions 2009-2010

ACADEMIC and Extracurricular Highlights

John Yoest with sister Hannah Yoest, rower at UVA, completes Suntrust Marathon

Virginia High School League.

Piano Teacher 2012

Chess Champion, Charlottesville, Virginia Parks and Recreation, 2001

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John Yoest on set Non-verbal communication skills: Played Thomas Jefferson’s grandson in the movie, The Sally Hemming Story age four.

CBS miniseries, Sally Hemings, An American Scandal, February, 2000.

Sam Neill …. Thomas Jefferson

Carmen Ejogo …. Sally Hemings

Diahann Carroll …. Betty Hemings

Baseball training camps (selected recent years)

George Washington University, Coach Steve Mrowka

United States Naval Academy, Coach Ryan Mau

University of Virgina, Coach Karl Kuhn

Virginia Baseball Club, Coach Mike Murray, Aaron Tarr

Student Athletic Performance Training, (SAPT) Fairfax, Virginia

Pinkman Baseball Academy, Coach Jeff Pinkman, Sterling, Virginia

 

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Yorktown High School Students Win OuterBanks Triathlon

Hannah and John

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With Help From Rival, Generals Emerge in First Place, Sun Gazette, Arlington, VA May 7, 2011

Yorktown Wins Region Baseball Opener, Sun Gazette, Arlington, VA May 28, 2011

Yorktown High School Students Win Outer Banks Triathlon, Sun Gazette, Arlington, VA August 28, 2009

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Hannah Ruth Yoest, Student Athlete Curriculum Vita

May 17, 2011 | By | 2 Comments

Hannah Ruth Yoest boat undefeated 2012 winning the Atlantic Coast Conference championship

University of Virginia wills the NCAA D-1, women’s crew, 2012

Update, December 10, 2010, Hannah Yoest joins University of Virginia Rowing

Virginia Rowing Announces Recruiting Class

CHARLOTTESVILLE – Virginia rowing head coach Kevin Sauer announced the signing of Hemingway Benton, Maggie Bowman-Jones, Chloe Carry, Emily Crump, Katie Fanikos, Chandler Lally, Maddie Keating, Lindley Smith, Hannah Yoest and Lizzy Youngling to National Letters of Intent to row for the Cavaliers beginning in 2011.

“This is a really good class and they are proven winners,” Sauer said. “They will bring a lot of hard work and talent to our team next fall.”

Hannah Yoest (5-6, Arlington, Va., Yorktown High School for coaches Carol Dinion, Kirk Shipley and Nick Johnson) was a team captain for her team and was named 2010 All-Met Honorable Mention. She was a participant at the 2010 Junior Women’s National Team Sculling Selection Camp and 2009 Junior B National Sculling Development Camp. Yoest stroked the youth eight that placed third at the 2010 Canadian Henley and seventh at the 2010 Head of the Charles. She completed both the Marine Corps and SunTrust marathons and won her age group at the 2009 OBX Triathlon.

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Hannah Yoest, Jack Yoest signing letter of intent to Crew at UVA, Nov 17, 2010
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Photo Credit: Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D.

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HANNAH YOEST

Yorktown High School

5201 N. 28th Street

Arlington, Virginia 22207

Class of 2011

Coach: Carol Dinion

Personal 5’6″ 140 lbs.

2012 US Junior Worlds Development Team Competition in Berlin, July 2011

Selection Camp, Junior Women’s National Team, 2010: Guenter Beutter

 

Thompsons Boat Club, Washington, DC: Kirk Shipley

Old Dominion Boat Club, Alexandria, Virginia: Nick Johnson

Jr. B National Development Sculling: Bill Randall, Bob Spousta

 

ROWING ACCOMPLISHMENTS

2,000 meter time (2K):

7:21.0 May 2011

7:25.9 with a 1:51.4 negative split, March, 2011, Team Practice (253 average watts)

7:26.3 with a 1:51.3 split; April 27, 2010; Team Practice

7:33.1 March 7th; U.S. Rowing Junior National I.D. Camp

7:38.1 March 2nd; Team Practice

7:39:0 January 10th; Placed 2nd among Juniors, overall 8th of 54 rowers,

2010 MidAtlantic Erg Sprints.

+ Competition in Berlin, July 2011

+ All-Met, Girls Rowing, The Washington Post, Spring, 2011

+ Invited: one of 25 selected to compete for a seat on the USRowing Junior National Team 4X

+ Head of the Charles, 2010, 7th Place in field of 70, stroked

+ Head of the Occoquan, 2010, 1st Place, stroked

+ All Met Honorable Mention, The Washington Post June 9, 2010. (Carol Dinion named Coach of the year.)

+ Elected Captain Varsity Crew for 2010-2011

4K 1:59.7 split, 15.56

6K 2:01.0 split, 24.23

500m 1:40.5

539 Watts

 

Junior Year, 2010

Spring 2010

Named Outstanding Rower for women’s crew, Yorktown High School, 2010

8th Place, 76th Scholastic Nationals Regatta, Saratoga Springs, NY, 1st Varsity, rowed stroke.

Stotesbury: 4th in semi-finals, 8th overall by time, 6 seat

Charlie Butt: 2nd place in Finals, 6 seat

Darrell Winslow: 1st place in Finals, 2 seat

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Hannah Yoest, Left, Gold Medalist

Mid-Atlantic Erg Sprints

Junior Mixed 2K Relay

Jan 10, 2010

photo credit: Helena Yoest

Winter 2010

Placed 2nd among Juniors, overall 8th of 54 rowers, 2010 Mid-Atlantic Erg Sprints.

Gold medal, mixed relay, Mid-Atlantic Erg Sprints

Fall 2009

12th Place, Head of the Charles, Old Dominion Boat Club, 4 seat

1st place, Head of the Potomac

2nd place, Head of the Christina (due to time penalty)

Summer 2009

US Rowing, Junior B Sculling camp

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Hannah Yoest

Rower of the Year 2007Sophomore Year, 2009

Varsity Eight: Advanced to semifinals at SRAA Nationals, 1st Varsity; 4 seat

2nd at VASRA State Championship, 4 seat

15th at Stotesbury

Freshman Year, 2008

Freshman Eight:

Bronze at Ted Phoenix Championship, qualifying for Nationals, rowed stroke

Rowed stroke at SRAA Nationals

Awarded “Most Valuable Rower

8th Grade, 2007

Novice Eight

Silver, Women’s 4th Eight, Ted Phoenix Championship; 6th seat

Member The United States Rowing Association, USRowing, 996536

 

ACADEMIC and Extracurricular Highlights

Hannah Yoest completes Suntrust Marathon

HANNAH YOEST

 

GPA: 3.4

Recognized as an Advanced Placement (AP) Scholar by the CollegeBoard

Virginia Standards of Learning Program (SOL), Spring 2010, Writing, Pass/Advanced (Highest Category)

Spring 2010, Received Principal’s Award

Spring 2009, Received Principal’s Award

Student Government,

Junior Class Vice President, 2010;

Executive Board, Sophomore Class,

Student Representative, 2009

Visual Arts Gifted Program, Yorktown High School

Principal’s Award, 2009-10, presented to 7 per cent of student body. Her teachers write,

Hannah is one of her class’ leaders…Lively, involved and vivacious. Hannah is the first to help a fellow art student and even her teacher! She volunteers for any task…and can be counted on to follow through to completion. Her enthusiasm and love of life is infectious…

Principal’s Award, 2008-09, for Distinctly Positive Contribution to School Community

Voted “Most Friendly” by the student body, 2009 and 2010.

Voted “Most Spirited” by the student body, 2008.

Completed the 2009 Suntrust Marathon, Richmond, Virginia, November 14, 2009

Completed the 2007 Marine Corps Marathon, Washington, DC; October 28, 2007

Gold Medal, 16-19 women’s age group for the 2009 OBX Triathlon

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Hannah Yoest rowing stroke

Novice year, copyright protected

Triathlon, Outer Banks, North Carolina

-Swim, Run, Bike Fall; Fall 2004

-Swimming Leg .9 mile; Fall 2003

Self-Defense Yellow Belt, 2nd Degree, April 23, 2004

Intern, Press Office, Senator Lamar Alexander, Spring, 2008

Intern, Production Assistant, Robert Wickers, December, 2008

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Jack Yoest, dad; Hannah Yoest, 14, center;

Charmaine Yoest, mom

Marine Corps Marathon, 26.2 miles, October 2007Traveled to Peru as part of a construction team re-building a house, 2007.

Traveled to Dominican Republic to perform with a drama troupe at an orphanage, 2006.

Gold Medals, OBX Triathlon, 2009

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Hannah Yoest, Freshman Volleyball

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Hannah Yoest state track finalist, 400 meters, 2003

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Hannah Yoest at tennis lessons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Hannah Yoest first interview

 

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Hannah Yoest with mom

 

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Hannah Yoest studies with mom

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Letter from Ronald Reagan

 

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Hannah Yoest, Right, in the Dominican Republic

foot_washing_DR_.JPGHannah Yoest, washing feet in the Dominican Republic

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Hannah Yoest, painting an orphanage in Peru

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Gil Crouse, Ph.D., grandfather, Hannah Yoest

OBX Triathlon, 2004

Short Bio at the Jump

Read More

The Yoest Christmas Picture 2010

December 7, 2010 | By | No Comments

“The most merciful thing that the large family does to one of its infant members is to kill it.” Margaret Sanger, Woman and the New Race.

Liberals don’t care much for Charmaine. Pictured are six reasons why: One Husband, Five Children.

Christmas picture under consideration for 2010.

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Thank you (foot)notes,

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Jack and Charmaine also blog at Reasoned Audacity and at Management Training of DC, LLC.

Junior Varsity Baseball Tryouts by John Wesley Yoest III

June 22, 2010 | By | No Comments

This is a guest post by John, The Dude. It was my Father’s Day gift. Better than a tie.

Two points:

1) His self-confidence and self-esteem does not surprise anyone, and

2) John is the only teenager in our neighborhood who knows how to handle a lawnmower, leaf-blower and edger.

Somehow the two are related.

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Junior Varsity Baseball Tryouts by John Wesley Yoest III

john_yoest_JV_baseball_2009.jpgI can’t sleep. It is the night before my big tryout and I cannot sleep. I have thrown and hit today, so I feel exhausted. Yet I cannot find the comfort of sleep. My mind keeps racing! Baseball, it is all I can think about. Will I do well? Will I make it? What if, what if, what if? I can’t sleep.

Yorktown High School has a peculiar policy on certain sports, which allows 8th graders to try out for Freshmen/JV teams. Since Arlington Middle Schools don’t offer certain sports like baseball or football, Yorktown allows 8th graders to participate in High School sports. JV baseball has the highest competition. Over 60 people try out for a team that might take 22. Generally, the JV team takes one, maybe two eighth graders. My odds of making it were slim at best.

Despite the odds, I began my preparation for the tryouts with complete dedication. I got cut from the Middle School basketball team. So instead of dribbling and shooting lay-ups I took ground balls and hit soft-toss. I began in early November. Six days a week for the next five months I practiced baseball. Anything and everything: if it involved a baseball, I practiced it. My dad and I developed a little motto: “A little bit every day, makes you better and better, in every way.” It might sound a little corny; but it worked for me.

When it began to snow, I took practice indoors. This was not easy to do at all. My dad would toss ground balls to me inside our living room! I can’t even count how many lamps, glasses and cups we broke that winter. Eventually my mom kicked me out of the house. Determined to get better, I threw the baseball with my dad in the snow. My neighbors thought we were crazy. But I was on a mission.

The largest thing that kept me going through these tough practices was my dad. Every day he would remind me to do some drills. Some days I felt awful. I didn’t want to practice, or I was just plain tired. My dad didn’t want to hear any of that nonsense. Rain or shine, feeling good or bad, we found some way to keep working.

I got sick after practicing out in the rain and cold. It was just a little coughing and sneezing, but I felt really bad. All I wanted to do was sit in bed and sleep. I remember getting in bed with chicken noodle soup, and feeling like I never wanted to get out ever again. Instead of going out and doing the drills, my dad brought the drills to me. I sat in bed and tossed the baseball against the wall. I did this for hours. When I couldn’t run and jump, I practiced my hand quickness. Just simply tossing the ball around in my glove. It might seem a little silly and repetitive, but I’ve seen countless routine plays messed up by a bad glove to hand transition.

Basics are the most fundamental parts of baseball. That’s what I practiced the most. I didn’t practice the diving plays in the outfield, or the ridiculous backhand catches. I practiced fielding ground balls and catching easy pop-ups. Those simple, easy fundamentals will make you a great player. With time, those ESPN highlight tape plays will appear, but if you can’t field a normal ground ball, I realized I’d never become great. Or even make the team.

Without even realizing it, February came around. I kept getting better and better, stronger and faster. But on Valentine’s Day, it all turned around. My mom was diagnosed with cancer on February 14. This was only a few short weeks before my tryout. The pain and devastation I felt when I was told nearly ruined me. For the first time, I did not want to keep on practicing. I felt weak and destroyed. But my parents were still there for me.

My mom sat with me and talked with me. I was certainly sad and I couldn’t imagine the thought of her losing her hair. She told me not to worry. She said she would be fine. The biggest thing she said to me however, was that she wanted me to keep on practicing, and to make the JV team. . . for her.

The very next day, you can imagine I was working as hard as ever. I ran, I hit, I ran even more. I did not stop. I could not afford to be cut. I threw every single day with my dad. On Sundays, we went to the track to run. The intensity picked up, until the day before the tryout.

The Sunday before the tryout my dad talked with me. The tryout was in less than 24 hours. I remember it so clearly in my mind. My dad told me he was proud of me. He told me he loved me and always would. But he looked pained. He told me that today was the last day he could be my coach. I almost cried because I knew it was true. I had grown up. I was trying out for High School Baseball. My dad said he couldn’t keep up with me, and that whether or not I made the cut, I had grown up beyond his level of expertise. He said we could still do drills and such, but today was the last day. At that moment, I knew I was ready.

I shined my cleats, I oiled my glove, and I bought loads of sunflower seeds. I stashed my glove underneath my bed for good luck, and I laid out all of my gear in my room. I had all of my sets of baseball pants with belts set out in a row, with baseball shirts corresponding to each. You know what they say: An ounce of appearance is worth a pound of performance. In order to play your best, you have to look the best.

The week of tryouts that ensued flew by me in such a flash. To be honest, I can’t tell you a single thing that happened that week. All I knew was that I was competing for a spot, and I would try my hardest to show that I deserved it. And so I did. I competed. The week flew by me right before my eyes. I saw some of my closest friends get cut from the team. There were now 15 8th graders, and only two would make it. I was very sad, but I only strove harder.

The second to the last day was killer. We worked outside in the batting cages, and we ran quite a few miles. After doing the running for about an hour, everyone was dead tired. Every single person was sweating profusely. But instead of letting us take a break, we went down to the track, and ran even more. I logged so many laps at the track prior to the tryouts. Even though I was pretty much dead, I found a way to keep afloat. Did the coaches notice my hustle? Would my stamina hold? I could only hope and wait for the answer.

Sooner or later, there were only a few select people left. There were about 30 people left trying out for the team. All 30 were good enough to play in All-Stars. 15 of the 30 were 8th graders; only two would make it. While 10 or 11 of the other 15 Freshmen and Sophomores would make it. Most of them were my best friends. But the last day of tryouts had finally come. I would soon know if my hard work would pay off.

The last tryout was at an indoor training facility. I was excited because all of my practicing had been indoors. Indeed, I played quite well that last day. But was it good enough? We hit in batting cages, we took ground balls, we did everything for about two hours. Finally, the coach called us in. The moment of truth had finally come.

The first thing I remember was being in a room with the 30 players and the coach. The coach asked for all the returning JV players to leave the room. They left the room and waited outside. To this day, I do not think my heart has pounded as hard as it did then. I was quite literally shaking, from the anxiety. The coach was being slow and careful. He looked around, deliberately making eye contact with every player.

He then called a few names and asked them to join the others who had left: . . . Young, Mellin, Fallon, Herold, Marshall, Yoest. I did not even know what to think. I left the room with the players and walked outside. . . to the smiling and happy faces of our new teammates.

High fives were exchanged, and everyone was just happy. I made the team! I could hardly believe it. All my hard work had finally reached fruition. I was officially a member of the JV squad. Everyone laughed and joked about “initiations,” but that is a whole different story.

I’ll never forget making JV baseball as an 8th grader. It was hard. But I loved every second of the preparation, the toil and the reward. I went home and told my folks. I think my mom cried she was so happy. During the tryouts she had gone through surgery, and her future was looking bright. My dad was so proud of me he didn’t know what to say.

I go to bed happy, yet nervous. Will I play well during the season, if I play at all? Will the coach like me? What if he changes his mind? What if, what if, what if? I can’t sleep…

Yorktown High School Students Complete Suntrust Richmond Marathon, Hannah and John Yoest

November 16, 2009 | By | No Comments


Hannah & John at the

Suntrust Richmond Marathon

November 14, 2009

Yorktown High School students Hannah, 16, and John Yoest, 14, from Arlington, Virginia completed the Suntrust Richmond Marathon on November 14, 2009.

Hannah credits her crew training for her sub-six hour time.

“Our crew coach [Carol Dinion] tells us to put in the miles and to be focused,” said Hannah.

John reports that high school sports provide, “the discipline and practice and concentration to finish strong.”

There are two kinds of marathon-ers: competers and completers.

Those who run to finish and those who run for time.

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L to R,

Charmaine, Hannah with medal,

Jack, John with medal, Helena,

Front, L to R: Sarah & JamesClick on images to enlarge.

John and Hannah wanted to run a modest measured pace to finish and — encouraged by marathon-experienced parents — finish without injury.

They ran a 13:12 minute mile X 26.2.

They crossed the finish line together with a time of 5:47:24. 5,188 competitors registered for the marathon; 3785 finished.

Hannah, is the Vice President of the Junior Class at Yorktown High School and member of the Varsity Crew team.

John is President of the Freshman Class and member of the Junior Varsity Baseball and Freshman Football teams.

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Parents Charmaine & Jack Yoest

Hannah, Helena, John,

Crestar Richmond Marathon,

November 13, 1999Hannah and John first witnessed the marathon in 1999 watching their parents, Jack and Charmaine complete the hilly 26.2 mile course then known as the Crestar Richmond Marathon.

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Jack, Hannah, Charmaine

Marine Corps Marathon, 2007This is Hannah’s second Marathon. She completed the Marine Corps Marathon in 2007.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

Be sure to follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Hannah & John Yoest Take First Place in Triathlon

August 25, 2009 | By | No Comments

Please forgive the ‘day-in-the-life’ of Your (Insufferable) Business Blogger(R). Our two oldest offspring took home blue-ribboned medals at a triathlon.

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Yorktown High School Students Win OuterBanks Triathlon

Hannah and John

Nags Head, NC. Sunday August 23, 2009, the Outer Banks Triathlon Club sponsored their annual Swim, Bike, Run Sprint Triathlon. Yorktown High School, Arlington, VA was represented by Hannah Yoest, 16, a rising junior and John Yoest, 14 a rising freshman. Each took home First Place medals for their age categories. There were 204 competitors who braved the threatening Hurricane Bill.

“The weather was perfect,” says Hannah. “It was exhilarating – cloudy, low heat and sea air.” Hannah had been training on her bike by riding to her driver’s education class 7 miles a day and running to 6 miles her summer school classes.

Her brother, John was excited. “The bikes held up and the crowd was a blast.” John had trained for the event with a 60-mile bike ride with his church group.

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The Yoests participate in a number of team sports.

Hannah rows varsity crew at YHS and was named Most Valuable Rower in 2008 by her coaches. She was seated in First Boat last season.

John is a returning quarter back for the Freshman Football team. He also played Junior Varsity Baseball where he pitched a no-hitter as an 8th grader.

This was Hannah’s third triathlon event. She completed the 26.2 mile Marine Corps Marathon at 14.

Hannah is Vice President of the Student Government Association for her junior class.

Parents Jack and Charmaine Yoest, Ph.D. are proud of their two oldest children’s high school achievements. “They both have an inner drive and are self-motivated,” says Jack, consultant and adjunct professor of business at the Northern Virginia Community College.

“It was their idea, they kept at us to take them back down to the Outerbanks for the meet,” says Charmaine, CEO of the public interest law firm, AUL.

Jack and Charmaine have completed three marathons and attempt to take their five children where ever they travel. “Hannah and John are getting old enough now to compete in adult events – without us,” says Jack.

“But,” says Charmaine, “I wish they would clean their rooms…”

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Ever see a woman cry for 4 miles?

Marine Corps Marathon.

Marine Corps Marathon training.

Hannah finishes

Marine Corps Marathon.

Finish Strong

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Follow Your Business Blogger(R) and Charmaine on Twitter: @JackYoest and @CharmaineYoest

Memorial Day: 2009

May 23, 2009 | By | No Comments

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The Penta-Posse at

Arlington National Cemetary, 2005 Charmaine wrote this a few years ago.

Every time we’ve made the left turn onto Eisenhower Drive, and passed through the imposing brick gates of Arlington National Cemetery, I’ve been overwhelmed with emotion. Family members of those buried at Arlington National Cemetery are given a special pass and may drive onto the Hallowed Grounds to visit the grave of their loved one. It’s an enormous honor which makes me feel humbled.

My husband’s father served thirty years in the United States Navy, and died the year I married into the family, so I didn’t know him well. And the fact is, after a lifetime of nine-month Mediterranean tours, wars, and rumors of war, there is a lot my husband doesn’t know as well.

However, over the 15 years that we’ve been married, I have gotten to know my mother-in-law well. She doesn’t talk either about the sacrifices she made, but there is one story that she has told me several times.

Once, when my father-in-law was out on tour, and she was home with three small children, the car broke down and, of course, she had to take care of it. My husband marched up and said, “Don’t worry, Mom, I’ll fix it.” He was about five years old at the time.

My mother-in-law laughs. . . the little man, takin’ care of things. But it makes me cry.

We owe a lot to our military families.

When we visited Arlington this past week, we passed at least three funeral ceremonies on the way to Section 64. I lost track of the fresh graves and the still-standing tents, either just vacated by other grieving families, or awaiting the afternoon’s fresh, raw sorrow.

As we pulled up on Bradley Avenue, an Air Force honor guard was marching precisely back to their bus after a ceremony for an airman who had been a POW in Korea. While we searched for my father-in-law’s headstone, an empty horse-drawn caisson lumbered past, and settled briefly in the shade nearby, awaiting their next assignment. . .

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We found my father-in-law’s headstone: The front has the Christian Cross with the old Chief’s Curriculum Vita. Chief Yoest cut high school to catch World War II. He retired with rows of ribbons and a “v” device, and pinned butterbars on his boy. He now has a grandson, The Dude, who bears his name and wants to be a Navy pilot.

The reverse of the stone is blank, awaiting the inscripton for Chief Yoest’s high school sweetheart, his wife, Jack’s mom, “Babcia” (Polish for Grandmother), who is still with us. In the end, they will be buried together, an honor she earned.

As we turned to go, the Diva took her jingle-bell necklace from around her neck, and left it on the headstone. A fitting tribute for a warrior.

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Sailors, rest your oars.

We drove back down Bradley Avenue — past a fresh grave covered by a tarp. In front of us, sparkling in the bright sunlight of a gorgeous day, stretched row after row of white marble markers, orderly, peaceful, some weathered, others new and crisply chiseled . . .

I turned to the Penta-Posse. “I want you to look,” I said. “I want you to understand, that each one of these headstones represents someone who gave their life so that you could be free.”

They were quiet and solemn. The weight of it is beyond measure.

The Dreamer said, “Don’t cry, Mom.”

We made the right turn onto Eisenhower. We drove slowly toward the exit, passing the drive to the Tomb of the Unknowns to our left, until we came to a crosswalk thronged with tourists. The guard on duty motioned to the crowd to stop, and we drove through, passing through the gates, back to a busy day, leaving behind — the curious crowds, the chattering school children. . . and the silent stones.

***

Our good friend Mackubin Owens, Ph.D., has a terrific article up on NRO from last year, Mystic Chords of Memory, From America’s Founding, to the sacrifices of her sons and daughters, we remember.

This weekend, we mark the 140th anniversary of the first official observation of the holiday we now call Memorial Day, as established by General John A. Logan’s “General Order No. 11″ of the Grand Army of the Republic dated 5 May, 1868. This order reads in part: “The 30th day of May 1868 is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers and otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land.” Logan’s order served to ratify a practice that was already widespread, both in the North and the South, in the years immediately following the Civil War.

Alas, for many Americans today, Memorial Day has come to signify nothing more than another three-day weekend, a mere excuse for a weekend cook-out. Such an observance of Memorial Day obscures even the vestiges of its intended meaning: a solemn time, serving both as catharsis for those who fought and survived, and to ensure that those who follow will not forget the sacrifice of those who died that the American Republic and the principles that sustain it, might live.

“Mac” continues,

Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address gives universal meaning to the particular deaths that occurred on that hallowed ground, thus allowing us to understand Memorial Day in the light of the Fourth of July, to comprehend the honorable end of the soldiers in the light of the glorious beginning and purpose of the nation. The deaths of the soldiers at Gettysburg, of those who died during the Civil War as a whole, and indeed of those who have fallen in all the wars of America, are validated by reference to the nation and its founding principles as articulated in the Declaration of Independence.

Some will object, claiming that linking Memorial Day and Independence Day glorifies war and trivializes individual loss and the end of youth and joy. How can the loved ones of a fallen soldier ever recover from such a loss? I corresponded with the mother of one of my Marines who died in Vietnam for some time after his death. He was an only child and her inconsolable pain and grief put me in mind of Rudyard Kipling’s poem, Epitaphs of the War, verse IV, “An Only Son”:

I have slain none but my mother, She

(Blessing her slayer) died of grief for me.

Kipling too, lost his only son in World War I.

But as Holmes said in 1884, “[G]rief is not the end of all. I seem to hear the funeral march become a paean. I see beyond the forest the moving banners of a hidden column. Our dead brothers still live for us, and bid us think of life, not death — of life to which in their youth they lent the passion and joy of the spring. As I listen, the great chorus of life and joy begins again, and amid the awful orchestra of seen and unseen powers and destinies of good and evil our trumpets sound once more a note of daring, hope and will.”

This Memorial Day the household of Your Business Blogger(R) will fly our Flag as we always do and remember those who “gave the last full measure” and died in service.

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Dad is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. The years on his head stone tell of his full life. Our family was so lucky.

Nearby head stones tell of service men who died far too soon. Far too young. In war for us.


Danny Boy

The BalladThe Irish classic Danny Boy has a long and varied history. The following explanation is my favorite and the simplest,

Once, a long time ago there was an old man who had raised many sons who he loved dearly. A war raged over the land that they lived in and one by one he saw each of them go off to fight and not return. Then one day, as harvest time drew near, he knew that his youngest, and most precious, son would soon be going off to fight just as his brothers before him. The old man was sad and knew that he may never see his last boy alive. He looked intently at the young lad, and with tears in his eyes he sang this song.

The ballad cannot begin to reveal the emotion and the pain of fathers and mothers who bury sons in a time of war.

I do not know how families do this.

But I do know that we must be grateful.

We are so lucky. Happy Memorial Day.

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Thank you (foot)notes:

See Meditation on Suffering and Sacrifice,

The famous chapel on the grounds of the United States Air Force Academy nestled at the base of the Rocky Mountains is more truly a cathedral. Outwardly, it is all sleek silver-wing metal, with seventeen external buttresses, knifing severely skyward. Designed to evoke an air-frame, the architecture does not immediately summon spiritual devotion.

But cross the threshold, step inside, and one is transported to another plane. The solemn air is bathed in the soft splendor of muted light. While the stern steel silhouette dominates the external view, the interior reveals the fragile panels of stained-glass that the harsh ribs support. The intricate glass panes filter and animate the sunlight, illuminating the sacred space with almost a visual hush.

At the front of the chapel, a single row is roped off. “Reserved” the sign says, for all the United States aviators who are missing in action or prisoners of war. The only occupant of the pew is a single, burning candle.

“Greater love hath no man than this. . .” reads the plaque. The Scripture it alludes to concludes: “that a man lays down his life for his friends.”

My thoughts immediately fly to my boy, my sweet Dude, who wants to be a fighter pilot. And baby Boo, who will almost certainly want to follow his older brother. My heart blanches. How could I bear it? And yet so many other mothers — gold-star mothers — even this very day, must find a way when their sons have given the last measure of devotion.

Be sure to read Charmaine’s post from 2005, Memorial Day: Arlington National Cemetery

Danny Boy Lyrics at Memorial Day, 2008, Danny Boy.

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