Today, is for me, a Thanksgiving. As a United States Marine, who's been to war, I understand exactly what it is I'm thankful for. Some of us have heard the sounds, smelled the smells, and worn the dirt, 10,000 miles away from all we love, and fight to protect. Our heroes are the ones who will never have the chance to grow old. Those that gave their lives for an idea, a belief that we do live in the greatest nation. Those that died for those ideals who will never be husbands, wives, fathers and mothers, they will never have the chance to live out their dreams. There are American cemeteries all over the world, filled with Americans who in fact died, so that I, you, and future generations could live out our dreams. I read that, "Anything worth fighting for, is worth dying for." That thought alone is why today is my Thanksgiving and my children's Thanksgiving, even if they don't know it. In war, all we have is each other, our Brothers. Home is a fantasy, a distant memory, what we have in that moment is each other and a mandate to accomplish the mission. We know that accomplishing the mission is our only way home. For some, that was not to be. They will forever be 19, 20, 21 and beyond. They will become a memory. Let's not let them become a distant memory, a fantasy. It's because of them, their sacrifice, that this experiment we call America is alive. We should all be thankful. To our Gold Star families, our nation owes a debt to be paid daily by making this nation, the greatest nation it can be. I am grateful, I am truly blessed to be a part of it all.
This day won't mean anything to anyone, if we don't make it mean something to everyone.
Sons and daughters... brothers and sisters... fathers and mothers... empty seats... For some Memorial Day is every day. Loved by many, today, remembered by all. Search for those lost in WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam here: