Local

May 17, 2012

Fort Irwin family shares common bond through violin

Tags:
By Caroline Keyser
Warrior editor

The Crippen family performs at Open Mic Night at Shockwave April 27, where Coco took second place for her solo rendition of Ave Maria. Pictured from left are: Spc. Joshua Crippen, Jeff Crippen, 8, Coco Crippen, 9, and Amy Crippen.

During his recent deployment to Afghanistan, Spc. Joshua Crippen carried a precious item in a dark case, and it wasn’t a weapon.

The item was his violin, and during long days and nights spent thousands of miles away from his family, playing it gave the I Battery Soldier a way to feel more connected to them.  That’s because Crippen’s wife, Amy, and his two children, Coco, 9, and Jeff, 8, also play the violin.

Despite Joshua’s objections that the violin would get dusty and potentially damaged, “my wife insisted I bring it with me,” he said.

The violin has been an important source of connection for Joshua and Amy since they first met.

“She thought I was just flirting with her when I first told her I play,” Joshua said.

Then she realized he was serious.  Both of them had been playing since childhood, so when their children were born, it was only natural that the younger Crippens would learn to play, too.  Through a combination of music teachers and lessons from Amy, Coco and Jeff have learned to play the likes of Beethoven and Bach.

“After I heard some violin CDs my mom was playing in the car, I really liked it,” Coco said.  “I really like playing the violin because when I’m mad and then I play, I feel better.  I enjoy hearing new songs and improving.”

Jeff, who started playing about two years ago, was a little harder to convince.

“When I was young, I didn’t like playing, but now I do,” he said.

Amy said she and Joshua felt it was important that their children learn to play the instrument their parents love.

“The violin helps kids focus and improve their memory, and it also brings music into their lives,” she said.  “When they are alone or sad, they can have their violin with them and they won’t feel so lonely.”

Fighting loneliness is exactly what Joshua’s violin helped him do during his deployment.  He recounted numerous times when he’d played songs over the phone for fellow Soldiers talking to their spouses, and he teamed up with another violin player, a Canadian soldier, to provide music at religious services.

“I think it brought some peace and comfort to those around me,” he said.

While a battle-tested Soldier in fatigues playing the violin may be an unusual sight — travelers in a Romanian airport even stopped to take pictures of Joshua playing on his way back from deployment — Joshua said the response he’s gotten from those around him has always been positive.  On overnight CQ desk duty, he brings his violin along to help him stay alert, to the surprise and amusement of fellow Soldiers.

“It’s better than an energy drink,” he said.  “A lot of Soldiers have said, ‘Wow, that’s really relaxing.’”

Later this month, the Crippen family will take their musical talent on the road to perform at a friend’s wedding.

“I think the violin has brought us closer together,” Amy said.

Joshua Crippen is available to play for private gatherings.   For more information, call 714-519-5637.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

News Briefs April 2015

Ongoing Free tax filing services. 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Monday – Friday, through April 15. Tax center, building 230. Available to active duty military personnel (including Reserves and National Guard on orders for 30 days or more), their dependents, and military retirees. Call 380-3604. Holy Week and Easter Services April 3, 3 p.m., Stations...
 
 
ZacharyCook

Students practice the scientific method

Allison Piper, 11, a fifth grade student in Briarly Mayeda’s class, stands alongside her science project, “Goldfish Response to Pitch” at Tiefort View Intermediate School here, March 9. She hypothesized that her fantail g...
 
 
COLOdonoghue

Listening to the community

Col. Tom O’Donoghue, United States Army Force Integration officer with DA headquarters G3/5/7, spoke at a Listening Session in Barstow, March 17. Department of the Army officials and leadership of this installation addressed ...
 

 

Center Chapel re-opens!

Photo courtesy of Fort Irwin Religious Support Office Chaplain (Maj.) Vincent Manuel blesses the Fort Irwin Center Chapel sanctuary following a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the chapel reopening after being closed for almost six months after severe flooding in August 2013. The National Training Center and Fort Irwin Religious Support Office celebrated the re-opening of...
 
 
FreedomFlight_looking_south

Cleared for takeoff

Freedom Flight Landing Strip is actually two 7,700-foot long landing strips and an apron that can accommodate up to 20 C-17 or C-130 airplanes. The project involved moving more than 750,000 cubic yards of dirt in a western area...
 
 

A service invested in your community

The Fort Irwin Exchange plans to complete improvements to some of their facilities and enhance their provided services to the community by this spring. “Currently, the Service Station on Langford Lake Road is undergoing an image upgrade to make it look more appealing for our customers and to increase efficiency related to customer service,” stated...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin