Final Details EDIT

The time Jonny is arriving to MacDill has been changed (from 1400 to 1316), please note below

The details are now set in stone. For those of you who would like to pay your respects, here they are:

Cpl Jonathan D. Porto
arrives home to St. Petersburg, FL on Monday 22 March 2010 @ 1316 **
He will be flying in to MacDill AFB
and from there a processional will be held to
Anderson-McQueen Family Life Tribute Center
2201 Dr. M. L. King Street North
St. Petersburg FL 33704

A visitation period (wake) will be held Tuesday from 1700-2000
at Anderson-McQueen

Funeral services will be held on Wednesday 24 March at Bay Pines National Cemetery St. Petersburg, FL @ 1100
Processional will be held from Anderson-McQueen to Bay Pines, Anyone riding in processional should be ready to leave Anderson-McQueen at 1000.

Thank you again for all of your continuing love, support, and prayers.

May the Lord watch between me and Thee,
while we are absent, one from another

I Love You Jonny, and I'm with you every step of the way.

Semper Fi,


  1. We're praying so hard for you. I know he'll be right there watching over you and Ariana.

    BIG BIG HUGS through the computer screen!

  2. I'm praying for you and Ariana. I know your husband is there watching over you both. BIG HUGS!

  3. If I could be there, I would be.
    My love and respect and prayers fly over the ocean and settle in your hands.
    Find your peace.
    Your husband is always with you and your baby girl.
    Celebrate the wonderful man he was (and always will be)

  4. Know that we're thinking of you and praying for you.
    Hugs & Semper Fi

  5. "Just remember this...I'm in a better place, where Soldiers live in peace and angels sing amazing grace...." Be strong!!! Thinking of you everyday!

  6. Praying for you and your family. He's there with you. We're all there with you. Sending love and praying for comfort.

  7. I am always thinking about you and your daughter and praying for you through this difficult journey. I wish I could be there to support you but know you are always in my thoughts. I admire your strength and courage and know that as you are proud of your husband he is proud of you
    God bless and again if you ever need anything please don't hesitate to ask
    Love Katie

  8. I know he'll be there with you. You have the best guardian angel you could possibly have.

    You and Ariana are in my thoughts and prayers ♥

  9. Still thinking of you. As a military spouse I want you to know that although I'm not there with you in person, I'm are there with you in heart. Stay strong. Much love.

  10. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Stay strong for your little one.

  11. You are so amazingly strong. We are all praying and loving on you from a distance. Psalm 34:18.

  12. Continuing to lift you and your family in prayer.

  13. Stay strong! He's wrapping his arms around you!

  14. We will be with you in heart and spirt. God bless your family now and forever.

  15. Mrs P,
    Words alone cannot begin to describe what I feel for you and your family. I am proud to have a Marine in my family, so I guess that makes me feel like you are family, too. Prayers for you and Ariana as you navigate this difficult journey and thank you for providing a meaningful manner to honor your man- will be sending a donation.
    Love and hugs

  16. You and sweet Ariana will forever be in my prayers. I'm a complete (blog) stranger, but I'm sending you lots of love and hugs, for what they're worth.

  17. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

    Chaplain Hansen & Kristie

  18. Nancy, an Army wifeMarch 21, 2010 at 10:05 PM

    Mrs. P, I found out about your site from another blog I read. I've been coming back all week and I've been thinking of you and Ariana. I mentioned you at my women's prayer group today and we lifted you up in prayer. With Good Friday coming up, I've been thinking of Mary holding Jesus in her arms after he was taken off the cross. I'm sure she was thinking, "it wasn't supposed to end up this way." His mother felt excruciating pain and confusion. Jesus Himself suffered so He knows our sufferings. You can always go to Him and let Him know how you feel. He understands.

  19. Thinking of you today, tomorrow and everyday. Sending so many prayers and good thoughts for you and Ariana.

  20. You don't know me, but I was told of your story on a military spouse forum. I just want you to know I am praying for you and your young daughter.

  21. Rachel and Ariana,
    You are in my thoughts and prayers everyday. I am so sorry that you are having to welcome home Jonny in this way. Know that there is a world of people out here sending love to you and praying for you. You are a strong beautiful woman and Jonny will always be with you.

  22. Thinking about you and your family during this terrible time.

  23. I have been reading your blog as I am soon to be a military wife. I noticed you were a Phi Mu, as I too am a Phi Mu. I shared your story with my chapter and I just wanted to let you know that we are all keeping you and your little girl and your family in our thoughts and prayers. I am extremely sorry to hear about your loss, but you seem like you are such a strong woman and a role model to all military spouses.

    Love In Our Bond,

    Erin Hubbard

  24. You and your daughter have constantly been in my prayers. <3

  25. There are no words that I can say that will let you know how much your story has touched me this morning. May God watch over you and Ariana with Mr P by His side.
    God bless you.

  26. I just wanted to say that I am praying for you and your daughter.

  27. I just wanted to say that I will be on base to pay my respects to your family. And I wanted to tell you as a fellow military spouse, thank you to you, your husband, your daughter and family. I will pray for you, your daughter, and your husband.

  28. I just recently started following your blog and even though I don't personally know you we are both marine wives and we will always have a bond through that. My heart and thoughts and prayers are going out to you and your daughter and your families. You are going through every military wife's biggest fear and you're doing it with grace and strength. I think you're amazing. I will be thinking of you and keeping you in my prayers. If you ever need any support or just to talk, im only a blog away. By the way, our daughters are very close in age, so we'll probably go through all the "firsts" around the same time - i know its helpful to me, at least, to have others experiences on kiddo stuff. My family sends our condolences and our biggest thanks for your families sacrific and all the work your husband has done for our country! We will forever be grateful.

  29. Oh Mrs P! I KNOW that your precious husband, and Ariana's daddy, will ALWAYS be watching over you.

    Prayers are coming to you from outside the US, as many of us hold you in our hearts, with so much love and gratitude.

    Love NEVER dies..xoxox

  30. My heart breaks for you and your little girl. Thinking of you during all the difficult days ahead.

    God Bless Cpl Porto...I'm so sorry you were taken.

  31. You don't know me but I found your blog when someone I knew linked a post to your blog. I just want you to know that I have been praying for you all week. Stay strong and fall back on loved ones when you need it.

  32. God comfort you and give you strength. My son is over there right now - 2/2 Fox Co. I can't even imagine what you are feeling. Please give Jonny's mom a hug from this Marine mom in ND. God bless you, Ariana, and your families!

  33. I am thinking of you and Ariana every day and I am sending prayers your way. I wish I could be there to give hugs when needed but please know that you are in my thoughts.

  34. I just want to put these resources where you will see them.

    This is an organization that specializes in helping military families who have lost their service member:

    This is a foundation that is dedicated to helping people who've lost a spouse, especially younger people:

    Praying for you and your family. I am so, so sorry.

  35. youre a strong woman. keep your head up through these hard times and know that he went doing what he loved most. and i know he is looking over you and your daughter every single minute of every single day <3

  36. my thoughts and prayers are with your family and my heart hurts for you. my friend michele sent me your link and i feel like throwing up because your precious little blog is just like any of ours. i hate that this can and does happen to our marines and their families. may you have comfort in your heart knowing that your marine died doing what most men will never have the courage to do. ooh rah.

  37. Even though I never met your husband, he is a HERO in my eyes. Any man or woman that goes and fights for my freedom and our country deserves to be a HERO. So sorry for you and your daughter. Know he never died in vain...he helped make America safer for all of us for that I Salute him.

  38. I'm so sorry you have to go through this. Your in our prayers!!

  39. Thinking and praying for you today and the days to come. We are stationed at MacDill and it was so touching to see everyone waving their flags and saluting your husband. I hope you find peace and comfort even when it seems impossible. Know that your military family will always be there for you and your sweet babygirl.

  40. Many arms are holding each of you and uplifting all of you today and for the rest of your lives.

  41. Im praying for you and your daughter every day. Hugs!

  42. I heard about your tragedy through Lindsay's blog. I am so sorry for your & your daughter's loss. We'll be keeping you in our prayers during this devastating time.

  43. My church family here in Powhatan, Va. is praying for you. May you feel God's loving arms wrapped around you and Ariana.

  44. I've been praying for you all week. I hope that our prayers help you through the difficult times ahead

  45. Oh the tears. My husband was in Iraq when our baby was born. He (thank God) came home when she was 6 weeks old. My heart goes out to you from one Marine wife to another. Semper Fi!

  46. My dear friend Shayla sent me your way, angel.
    I am praying for you and your little girl. I could not imagine growing up without my father; my heart hurts for her. I know she will be told all the amazing things her Daddy did, and how much he loves her.

    I'm not a military family member, girlfriend, or wife, but I still understand the loss of a loved one. I hope you find peace, and I hope you know he's always with you.

  47. I came upon your blog from a link on a friend's Facebook page. I sat and cried and read all your posts from the beginning. I am a Marine wife also and my heart is breaking for you and your daughter. I send you my prayers and thoughts.

  48. OH MY Rachel!! I AM SO far behind. I have been emailing you!! I HAD NO IDEA this happened. I have goose bumps and tears for you. I am just in shock. I will catch up now on the rest. I AM just praying so hard for you and thinking of you!!! xoxoxoxoo

  49. My father began reading your blog a couple weeks ago. He recently sent a check for your daughters fund. May God Bless you and your family. I am the same age as you with a child the same age as Ari. The only way I know I could get through your situation would be to trust in the Lord. A co-workers of mine's daughter just lost her husband in combat as well. Here are some verses I sent her way:

    Out of the people on the face of the earth, the Lord has
    chosen you to be His cherished, personal treasure.
    -Deuteronomy 7:6

    I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk
    in darkness, but will have the light of life.
    -John 8:12

    Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will
    give you rest.
    -Matthew 11:28

    I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go
    -Genesis 28:15

    The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are everlasting arms
    -Deuteronomy 33:27

    Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all you heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.
    -Proverbs 3:5-6

    Sorry for the long post.

  50. I found your blog through anothers and I just wanted to say I'm so sorry for your loss.

  51. I have not been able to get you or your husband out of my mind since I read your first post. I have been praying for you CONSTANTLY.

    I hope you have the strenght of family surrounding you and that they help you get through these next few days.

    You all will continue to be in my prayers.

  52. Honey I know I've already commented on this post. But I had to tell you that it breaks my heart we couldn't come down there. However, I saw a news clip online of Jonny's homecoming and the hero's welcome he received was so moving. I can't fathom how difficult today and tomorrow (and the coming days) will be but please know you haven't left my heart or mind for a moment in the past week.

  53. I started reading your blog after seeing the link posted on the MacDill AFB ESC Group about your husband. I am an Air Force wife and we are being stationed at MacDill next month. I just finished reading your entire blog in a day. My heart is aching for you and Ariana. I couldn't possibly imagine what you are going through but my prayers are with you.

  54. from one marine spouse to the next, my thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter, though i dont know you since hearing the news i have prayed for you every night, stay strong

    semper fi -K.

  55. My prayers and my heart go out to you and your daughter.

  56. No words will take the pain away. Know that there are many who go to bed each night praying for you and your daughter.

    I was truly honored to be part of the motorcade procession for when your husband and our hero returned to St. Pete. Thank you for allowing the MacDill AFB community to show you, your daughter, family and husband the respect he earned.

    I am truly sorry that he was taken away from you so soon. You are an incredible mom and wife and I pray that you continue to use this forum for support as you grieve. May God protect you and your beautiful daughter.

  57. I don't even know you... but my heart is breaking for you and I am in tears for you right now. I lost an infant last summer, but I do have my husband. He is Active Duty Army and deploying to Afghanistan later this year.

    I cannot imagine your pain, especially at such a young age. I pray for peace in your heart as you walk this new journey.

  58. I cannot bring joy from your pain, but I have to believe the time your husband spent with you must have tempered his belief in service to others, with great joy. Your courage is equal to his own.

  59. Continuing to pray for you and your beautiful daughter. I pray that the Lord will lift you on his shoulders tomorrow and carry you through the funeral and the days to come. I pray that without a doubt you will know He is there bringing peace that surpasses all understanding. I pray you will see His hands at work in bringing comfort, provision, and joy. I pray that you will be surrounded by people who will be there when you need them. Those who can make you laugh, those who can listen when you weep and those who can just be there. Praying for you... a soon to be marine chaplain's wife.

  60. My heart breaks for you! I am praying for you and your little girl. Thank you for the sacrifice that your husband made, and the sacrifice you and your daughter continue to make. She will grow up knowing that her father is a hero! I pray that you will find some comfort in the midst of your sadness.

  61. Thinking about you and your daughter today. I will be praying for you and your family.

  62. Rachel,
    How I wish I could give you the biggest hug right now, but I feel it would not suffice. I'm sending SO much love and strength down with the rest of our sisters to be with you today. You've been in my thoughts and prayers all week and know that I'm always here if you need. He is, now and forever, a true American Hero.

    Love you always,

    "To keep forever sacred, the memories of those we have loved and lost..."

  63. I know today will be a very difficult day. I'm praying for you and Ariana. I know your husband is there watching over you both. You are such a strong lady and your daughter is so lucky to have you! If we can do anything please don't hesitate to let us know. Thinking of you today and always! God bless! Lots of virtual hugs from your blog readers!

  64. You, your family and your daughter are in my thoughts & prayers today- no one should have to do what you are doing today... not this young, not this way. My heart breaks for you...

    I wish there was something I could say, I know there isn't... but do know that there are hundreds upon hundreds of MilSpouses holding you and your loved ones in their hearts today and always.

  65. I pray for you and Ariana every day. I pray that today God will especially comfort and hold you both in His loving embrace.

    We're all thinking of you, hun.

  66. I hope you can feel the love and support behind you, and beside you, and in front of you, from all the milspouses out here. Our hearts and our thoughts are with you and your sweet daughter. And Jonny's love, is all around you.


  67. I just wanted to let you know that my family and I are praying for you today - we will continue to keep you and your family close to our hearts.

    I am so very sorry for your loss.

  68. Just stopping by to tell you that our family is praying for you, we are praying that you feel Johnny with you and that you feel all the prayerrs and strength being sent to you across the miles.

  69. Rachel, I'm a friend of Kate Furek's and even though we've never met I'm thinking of you these last few days and hoping you get through this ok. All the best to you and your daughter. Your husband is sorely missed.

  70. I'm so so sorry to hear about your husband. You and your family will be in my prayers.

  71. ~praying for you and sending BIG HUGS and so much love to you and your little one and families. ~Jenn

  72. I continue to think of you every second of the day. I am so sorry for your loss and please know if there is anything you ever need dont hesitate to ask. I love you sweet girl.

  73. Rachel, I tried posting a comment the other day, but now it looks as though it never came through. I was linked to your blog through the web of military wives and girlfriends, and I have not stopped thinking about you, your daughter, and Jonny since your post last week. You inspired me to start my own blog during my fiancé's deployment. He left almost 3 weeks ago for Afghanistan and is there now. I admire your strength and courage so much, and I can't begin to express how painfully sorry I am for yours and Ariana's loss. Thank you for being so strong for all of us. This hits so close to home and you are an incredibly brave, strong Marine wife and incredible mother. I'm thinking of you every day.

  74. I was just saying a prayer for you & your family & I read this verse...

    “A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling” (Psalm 68:5).

    “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).

  75. I just wanted to send out my thoughts and prayers to you. We have never met, but I found your blog via another friends blog. I am a 24y.o mom of a daughter, and of a husband who wants to be a marine. I cried reading what has happened, I can't imagine. I will continue to pray for you and your beautiful daughter. I am in topsail,nc all the time and alway see the Marines. They are strong, brave men, as I'm sure your husband was, and always will be. I wish I could have found your blog under different cirumstances, but will continue to follow it and pray for you. Nicole

  76. This comment has been removed by the author.

  77. Margot from Open Diary (and Full of Heart on her blog) shared your blog with me...I've been reading. I wanted to let you know that I am keeping you, your husband, your daughter and your families in my thoughts.

  78. *huge hugs* I am keeping yall in my thoughts/prayeres. I can't even imagine.

  79. I didn't realize you all were in St. Pete. I would have come paid my respects. If you ever need anything I live in Tampa and I'm SAHM, so I'm available. Again, I'm so so sorry. : )

  80. I just came across your blog from my cusion blog. I just want you to know my heart goes out to you and your daughter. I am a marines daughter and a marines girlfriend. Just know he is always with you. You and your beautiful daughter are never alone! When i say Semper Fi i mean it! I cried reading your blog. It truley touches me. My God bless you! Stay strong!

  81. What is Death?
    Death is nothing at all.
    I have only slipped away into the next room.
    I am I and you are you.
    Whatever we were to each other,
    that we still are.

    Call me by my old familiar name.
    Speak to me in the easy way
    which you always used.
    Put no difference in your tone.
    Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

    Laugh as we always laughed
    at the little jokes we enjoyed together.
    Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
    Let my name be ever the household word
    that it always was.
    Let it be spoken without affect,
    without the trace of a shadow on it.

    Life means all that it ever meant.
    It is the same that it ever was.
    There is absolutely unbroken continuity.
    Why should I be out of mind
    because I am out of sight?

    I am waiting for you,
    for an interval,
    somewhere very near,
    just around the corner.

    All is well.

  82. I just wanted to say that we are STILL praying for you.

  83. Mrs. P,

    My heart goes out to you and your family. You are in my thoughts and prayers <3 Stay strong for your little girl and know that your wonderful husband is watching over you both every single day. He will always be with you and your daughter.


  84. Mrs. P - I'm sending the biggest hugs your way. I'm so sorry for your loss. All of these women are right- he's watching over you and Ariana...

    You are in my thoughts, prayers and now, my blog. I am rather far away.. but if you need anything- I am another bloggy friend here for you.

    Take care girl.. Hugs!

  85. I don't know you but someone I know posted your blog link. I have been an air force wife for almost 6 years.
    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your daughter.

  86. keep wearing his shirts, leave all the pictures up, spray his cologne when you you miss's good. scream when you need to, don't hold back tears in the shower, tell story after story, write down memories of the past and hopes for the future...keep telling him everything. Healing will come. It might take a long time, and sometimes regress, but the wound won't always feel quite so deep. After laying my big brother to rest my only regret was holding back tears. Crying was such a good way to get it all out- I didn't do it nearly enough. It's been 11 years and I still wear his big T-shirts to bed, and his old fishing flip-flops in the summertime. He's still my big brother, James. Now, he doesn't mind sharing <3

    It's been a long time since I've seen you; but you're not far from my thoughts. I still remember getting ready for school in the community college bathroom after each 5am morning swim practice together in high school... fun times. It's ok to do what you feel like doing- I slept in my brothers closet just to smell him for a couple days, then his bed (and never let my mom change the sheets- for a good couple of weeks)...and I don't regret any of it.


  87. I'm Sergeant Dangerfield, an Army soldier in Afghanistan. I was standing in the chow line, waiting for some crappy meat loaf, behind a Marine. I thought about you. Yeah, I don't know you, but I've got an Army wife and a nine-month old girl. I mean it when I say that I'm sorry for your loss. The thought of something happening to me while I'm here (I'm a gun truck commander) terrifies me. Not for myself, but my wife and daughters.

    I've got a picture of the three of them ( that I carry with me, though, and when I look at them I'm actually less afraid. I see my wife and I see someone that I trust to lead my family without me. Again, I don't know you guys... but just maybe your husband was less afraid when he saw how strong you are.

    Amanda (my wife) cries, I cry sometimes. But no matter how far apart we are, we make each other stronger.

    God bless you Mrs. P.

    SGT Danger


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