With Thanksgiving just around the corner, retired Air Force Tech. Sgt. Tim Dowling has his thoughts centered around that special day when a dozen members of his family will be getting together to share a meal and a time of fun, board games and fellowship.
"Thanksgiving is a family thing for us," said the father of two sons.
"Family means a lot to us," he added.
During his 20 years in the military, Dowling, a resident of Roaring Branch, served in Germany, Missouri and North Dakota. His job often did not allow him to attend such joyous family functions.
However, since retiring in 2000, Dowling, who also has two grandsons, has been trying to make up for lost time by attending family gatherings.
Thanksgiving is a time to honor tradition and for Tim Dowling, part of that tradition is getting together with relatives and loved ones.
"You name it, it will probably be on the table, turkey and ham for sure," Dowling said.
"Of course we watch ball games and also share stories of what we all did throughout the year," he added.
"I really look forward to it actually, the time together. Even though most of us live close to one another, we are always so busy throughout the year. We're working all the time. The only time that we can really all get together is on a holiday," said Dowling, who is employed by Schwan's, a food service delivery company.
"Just being with one another is very important," he added.
Dowling said he had a lot to be thankful for this year.
"We have our lives, our health," he said. He also is grateful that he lives in a country where people can vote and where "we can voice our opinions."