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Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Memorial Day 2018

Today was a Memorial Day that was quite different for us. Even as we were somberly thinking of those who have given all for this Nation, we watched our only son walk away from us with a huge Army pack on his back, on his way to his first ROTC Camp and the first time he has been truly away from us and not with someone we personally knew and trusted. 

It had been an incredibly busy week. School exams, last day of school, a Baccalaureate service and graduation for our niece and  a family gathering to celebrate her graduation. It didn't leave me a lot of time to dwell on the moment I would see my "little" boy take another step on his own journey. It's a good thing too, because I had already made myself cry a few times just talking to friends about it. I just knew I was going to be a mess the morning we had to drop him off. On the way to the drop off, he and his girlfriend were on the phone and I had to fight back my tears. I know emotions and feelings must have been swirling within them both. I managed to make him hug me and we said our goodbye's without me coming apart. I was able to wait until we were driving away before my eyes welled up. I let a few fall and kept telling myself he isn't little anymore and this is something he decided to do all on his own. He has always seemed so grown up, even when he WAS little, but this past year of ROTC has really seen him mature even more. He loves it and has so much respect for his Sergeant and Colonel. Does it scare me? You bet it does. After dropping him off, my thoughts kept returning to not only those who have died in the course of securing our freedoms, but also to their families. To the mothers and fathers who had to be told they would never see their child again. The siblings finding out their brother or sister wouldn't be there to tease them, joke with them or give them advice. The loss of one of our Service Members doesn't just leave a hole in the Country, it leaves holes in the lives of all that loved and knew them. Holes that can never really be filled. 

Our remembrances help honor their Service, their lives and the impact they made as well as the family that they left behind. It's our small way of helping fill the holes left behind with some gratitude, appreciation and love for the sacrifices made so that we may always have the freedoms we treasure so much. Remembering them is our gesture, our salute, to the people who gave the extreme sacrifice that comes with having a Nation that is protected by people who willingly volunteer to stand in our place, that none of us would be forced to serve. Memorial Day is the specific day earmarked for those remembrances, but it wouldn't hurt to remember them the other days too. In this big ol' world, no one wants to be forgotten and some never should be. They gave it all that we might have it all. 


Thank a Veteran today! 

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