color: SOME SOLDIER'S MOM: Memorial Day 2006: Yes, In My Name.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Memorial Day 2006: Yes, In My Name.

My friend Capt. B reminds us that Memorial Day is not just a 3-day weekend. It is the day that we honor the members of our military that have fallen in defense of our country.

I know I say this a lot, but holidays have new meanings for me beginning this year. The change in my outlook is not just a one-year change, but a life-changing epiphany. The day
our son was wounded irreversibly changed the intensity with which I view each day, but especially holidays. Thanksgiving and Christmas had new meaning, as did New Year’s Day and Mother’s Day. And certainly Veterans’ Day.

However, I think one of the most significant changes for me is how I will view and celebrate and feel Memorial Day. My family has always remembered Memorial Day. Thanks to my mother, our family learned early to honor those that serve. We attended Memorial Day, Independence Day and Veterans' Day parades in our town: some years we sat and cheered from the curbs as we waved our American flags, while in other years we were participants.

We attended many wreath laying ceremonies at our war memorial on the grounds of our county court house in New City, New York and cheered from the court house lawn on Main Street (really) as Veterans paraded by. It was on the court house steps that we attended our first “Support the Troops” rally organized by two of Noah’s Senior class classmates, and attended with Noah. In fact, the large court house square, the large veterans community and the area's patriotism were key factors in our choice of the Arizona town where we now live. Paying homage to those that serve and have served is the least we can do... a few minutes from a whole day set aside to honor our war dead.

Joe Galoway asks us to remember the families of the fallen. As I wrote over at Milblogs, “David Salie was one of my son's instructors in Airborne school... he was in Bravo Co. while Noah was in Able Co. on the same Brigade Combat Team when they deployed. They had just arrived in Iraq when Sgt. Salie was killed. His widow, Deedy, continues to be an influence in the lives of the young men that David led, and in the lives of other military wives and mothers... offering them counsel and a shoulder to lean on and a hand to hold in good times and bad. I am proud to call Deedy Salie a friend. She is MY hero...”

And Robert Stokley reminds us of his pride for his late son, Sgt. Mike Stokley and how Mike will be remembered every Memorial Day. This Memorial Day will be so much different for me. After the deaths of so many of Noah’s unit last year (here, here, here, here, here, here), Memorial Day will never be the same. And after the grief of The Funeral of Spc. Tommy Byrd, the tears I shed on this and every Memorial Day will be hotter and will burn my cheeks deeper than in years past. The playing of “Taps” will stab at my heart and the National Anthem will never sound sweeter nor be more bittersweet. No, Memorial Day will never be the same. Not for me. Not for Noah and those that served and returned with him. Not for Deedy Salie and Robert Stokley and all the families of these fallen.

And not just these men, but all the soldiers that have died IN MY NAME in this war and all the wars that have been fought to defend democracy IN MY NAME. I will think on these young lives and the families left behind to mourn. This Memorial Day our family will mourn these young men, but we will also celebrate and honor them for their dedication, for their spirits, for their sacrifice. The sacrifices they made for me, for us…. In the Wars they fight for me… IN MY NAME.

I will remember each of these Heroes, and their families this Memorial Day and I ask that you do the same.

Remember, I will still be here,
As long as you hold me, in your memory
Remember, when your dreams have ended,
Time can be transcended,
Just remember me
I am the one star that keeps burning, so brightly,
It is the last light, to fade into the rising sun
I'm with you,
Whenever you tell, My story,
For I am all I've done
Remember, I will still be here,
As long as you hold me, in your memory,
Remember me
I am that one voice, in the cold wind,
That whispers,
And if you listen, you'll hear me call across the sky
As long as, I still can reach out, and touch you,
Then I will never die
Remember, I'll never leave you,
If you will only,
Remember me
Remember me...
Remember, I will still be here,
As long as you hold me,
In your memory
Remember, When your dreams have ended,
Time can be transcended,
I live forever,
Remember me
Remember me,
Remember... me...

"Remember" (from the sound track of the movie "Troy")
lyrics by Cynthia Weil, music by James Horner, as performed by Josh Groban


At 5/26/2006 6:22 AM , Blogger Melinda said...

Seeing those faces as soon as your page loaded made my heart swell with pride and then crack a little. I will be thinking of them and so many others this weekend.

Thanks for the timely post and the important reminder.

At 5/26/2006 7:07 AM , Blogger barb pfister said...

I will be thinking of all the names mentioned on your site and all the peoples' I currently blog with, but especially, my daughter Michelle, sho returned in November and her best friend Gavin Colburn who gave the ultimate sacrifice in April of 2005.

At 5/26/2006 7:41 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for this post. Yes, I did need the tissues! I work in a military hospital on Ft Carson, Colorado and I plan to share this with my co workers and as many people as I can. My family too, is a 3rd ID family and SFC Salie was my sons platoon SGT. I believe that my son is still alive today because of the teachings of that wonderful Hero! We are proud of his wife and family for still being there for not only his soldiers but their families as well. We have been praying for your family since I found out about your sons accident and we will contimue to pray for you and all of the other families who still have family memebers in harms way. Thankyou! Julie AKA Proud Parent!

At 5/27/2006 9:24 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post. Great reminders.

At 5/27/2006 1:59 PM , Blogger proud fan said...

What a wonderful and beautiful post to remind people what the holiday is truly about. Thank you.

At 5/29/2006 9:04 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great post. I'm sitting here at a Starbucks, weeping like a baby.

God Bless all who serve, there families and especially those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom.

The post on my blog pales in comparison to this one.

At 5/29/2006 5:05 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

SSM--you shame us all with your commitment, pride and patriotism. Thanks for reminding us what it's all about.


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