Not long ago Annette Frye found herself scratching her head as to why anyone would take a perfectly good piece of fabric, cut it up and sew it back together.
Then, four years ago, her son, Air Force EOD Master Sgt. Ronnie “Bo” Brickey, asked her to design a quilt memorializing 20 explosive ordnance disposal technicians who lost their lives in the line of duty.
“Since the completion of that first quilt, I fell in love with the process of cutting up fabric and sewing it back together,” said the Pendleton woman.
This past fall, Frye’s son sent the words “Prepare to meet thy God” and asked her to create another quilt.
The biblical words from Amos 4:12 have particular meaning to those who work closely with improvised explosive devices.
EOD Tech. Sgt. Lee Cundiff said that the phrase also refers to an iconic 1970s photograph of a British Army bomb technician approaching a suspect vehicle containing an improvised explosive device (IED) in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
The words, Cundiff explained, could possibly be the most discouraging thing to read when approaching a device designed to kill you.
“However, EOD Technicians have learned to live with a dissonant, yet paramount dichotomy,” Cundiff said, “living in a terminal state of calmness; knowing instinctively that we must survive to achieve full mission success, while accepting the fact that we have chosen to serve a greater calling — to give our life in lieu of others.”
The quilt is on display at Thimbles Fabric-N-More, 1849 Westgate Place, Pendleton.
It will be sent to the 2019 EOD Warrior Foundation Auction, which is the first weekend in May in Florida. Proceeds from the auction will go toward scholarships for children of warriors who made the ultimate sacrifice, Frye said.
“Whatever your passion or talent may be, I encourage you to use it to support causes that are near and dear to your heart,” she said.
“It can be as elaborate as creating a piece of art, or as simple as volunteering at a local event.”