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This blog exists only as an archive. It is a journal that serves as a window into my life as a Marine combat veteran serving in Iraq and Afghanistan; it was written with no filter, no politics and no agenda. Please feel free to follow my journey from beginning to end. Welcome to my life.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Brother Jim Boynton, S.J. and the Original 8

The Original 8

Years ago when my cousins would come and visit for the 4th of July or Christmas we would always have a great time. I was the “home” cousin who grew up in the same town as our grandparents, and therefore when they came to visit family they were on my turf. I enjoyed being the host and knowing the locals, but also was very sad to watch the car pull away at the end of the visit; each of us going back to our former life. Today I had a feeling in my gut that had net been there in over 30 years, but this time instead of watching my cousins drive away from St. Ignace, Michigan, I watched the last original members of Team Rubicon fly away in a helicopter. They will go back to their lives, changed forever, but no longer physically here. I will stay. Now we begin the transition to new doctors, firefighters, and military personnel. They original 8 have left behind enough dirty clothes to last me a long time, but more importantly they left me with memories and friendships I will never forget. Today I stayed behind and did not go to the camps. It was good to get a break, and it was good to spend some last moments with the original Team Rubicon. We now have uniforms, maps, internet, solar panels, and a well organized and supplied group. We have come a long way from the group of men who crossed the border from the Dominican Republic with the sole intention of helping a wounded people and nation. Yes Team Rubicon has come a long way. My hope is that Haiti will too. My hope is that eventually the large machines like the Red Cross and United Nations will be able to be here for the long haul. Team Rubicon was the first responders to countless people in need. We now begin another stage.

Brother Jim Boynton, S.J.


  1. Ummm...wow. Goose-bumps. I understand on a smaller scale what it is to say goodbye to your "group." I must say I got a great feeling and a HUGE smile when I saw..."uniforms, maps, internet, solar panels and a WELL-ORGANIZED and supplied group." I am SO PROUD!! Hell, I'm still wearing my red shirt! Ha! You are in continued good hands Brother Jim, I promise you that.
    I hope Day 1 with Rubicon 2 was, if anything, safe. I'm sure the people of Haiti were thrilled to see yet another determined, strong, CARING and well-qualified group. The whole thing is so overwhelming and I'm not even on the ground.
    Again, love to all, be safe and God bless you!


  2. Jim,

    When I saw that the original group was leaving, I knew it would be tough for you. You don't go through something like that without being changed and in this case you guys went through it together. Of course, after your family, you also belong to the family of the Society of Jesus and --- like bad cousins -- we will never go away!

    Un abrazo,


  3. Jim,
    I am Clay's mother. I hope to meet you someday and thank you in person for all you are doing in Haiti. I am so grateful Clay has been able to work with you. My husband, his step-dad, is a Methodist pastor in Texas. We have read your posts with great appreciation and awe to know that our son has been working by your side. What a terrific example of Christ's love you are in this world. We will continue to read your posts and pray for you and the team and the people of Haiti. Blessings to you.

  4. Jim,

    It must be hard on you to have the orignal team members leave. Your work in Haiti continues. For those with faith, there is no such thing as coincidence...we all know that you were sent there for a reason.

    Thanks for Team Rubicon's continuing example of what it means to be a man for others.

    Jan and Tom

  5. Jim, I'm glad you got a bit of a break today. Although I'm sure it was tough to say goodbye to the first group, I'm glad you're still there to help the next group... you are truly making a difference there, and you're an inspiration to me, to my students, and to many others.

  6. Brother Jim. good to know you took a break today, "it helps".while sad great things have been done for the people of Haiti. bless you dude.:)

  7. ditto, ditto, ditto, dittto, ditto and ditto
    You continue to be an instrument of God, may he continue to bless you for this