Tonight I am honored to present the Frank Canda award to a deserving Trooper. This award is given in the spirit of Lt Frank Canda, whose work demonstrated outstanding dedication and service to the members of A Troop. Now, let me tell you a little bit about Frank. Some of you may not have known him. He was a special guy. Frank was the kind of man you could rely on to do the right thing. He cared about the men in our troop both in Vietnam and during the formative years of our reunification. He was a positive person, a person who would do many tasks for the good of the Troop not for personal recognition but because it was the right thing to do. I guess more than anything, Frank was a good friend, to me personally and many of you. This award is an outstanding and appropriate way to memorialize Frank Canda.
Last year the first "Frankie" went to J.T. J.T. exemplifies the spirit of Frank Canda by spending many hours of tracking down and contacting missing Troopers. I think the best thing about this award, it is not a prize you can set out to win, but it is an award that shows what kind of character you have when no one is watching. I could name at least half dozen Troopers right now who deserve this award. This Troop has been blessed with many men and wives who go the extra mile for the brotherhood doing things that go unnoticed by most that are necessary for the general good of us all.
Tonight we present this award to a special Trooper who has never said no to us. He is a quality guy. He has been involved in the organization of the troop since we started finding each other over six years ago. He has continually demonstrated his dedication to the brotherhood of the Cav and I tell you the truth and I don't know if we honor him or he honors us more by being here tonight. He has been our leader for the first several years of our association, giving hundreds of hours of his time to serve the men and families of A Troop. He has earned our respect and gratitude and has never asked anything for himself, always giving freely of his time even though it took time away from Barbara and his family. I am sure if he can count, it is not that he is unable to count, the number of telephone calls and emails regarding the Troop that you received during and after the dinner hour, it would add up into the many hundreds. If he wasn't before, these past few years he has become a special friend for a lot of us. Sometimes Frank was called fearless leader and I guess we could say the same about this man. I wouldn't miss his speech here, his acceptance speech for anything in the world. To put it simply, the 2006 Frank Canda award goes to our friend Coop.