Today our country is honoring the memory of those who gave their life in service to their country. Whether on the field of battle or whether through some mishap during training or while on duty they were still “serving”. I have a friend whose beautiful son was lost while on base. He was there to serve in whatever capacity was needed and unfortunately lost his life while working at the gate. A vehicle struck him down. His intentions were to serve his country. His uniform and training attested to that, as did his willingness to leave home and work in a place he did not prefer to be in.
The mindset that it takes to accept the risk inherent to being a part of the military is something I cannot fathom.
My dad and his brothers served in the military. My husband did also. He enlisted during the Vietnam conflict though he never went to Vietnam. He was a hospital corpsman and ended up working at a military hospital in Europe. He asked to be deployed to Vietnam . The chaplain came to him and told him to take the duty to which he had been assigned. I think sometimes he feels guilty when he sees veterans who came back from those battles, and even worse when he sees the monuments memorializing those who did not come back.
Our son was not a fan of the military. His issues were with the governments and the underlying issues that he perceived took our young people into areas to fight. There are no right answers or easy ways to peel the onion concerning any of the issues that have brought us into military conflicts. He did however understand that those young people who chose to serve had the right to choose. As he had the right to choose what he would do.
I think of the family members who have lost children in the military throughout time. I think of the parents in war zones who have lost children in the conflict. I think of the hundreds of young people who will never grew and those that will never grow to adulthood and contribute more to the future. I miss them all. I grieve their passing. I wish it could be different. I admire their courage. I thank them for their willingness to serve.
Whatever helps the moms and dads, the grandparents, the wives, husbands and children to make it through another day – I wish for them. May you have whatever helps in abundance. I know, like me the one thing you desire, that you cannot have is your loved one back. I am so sorry for your loss.