To all who served

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by agedman, May 28, 2012.

  1. agedman

    agedman
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    To all the brothers and sisters of the BB that served in the military of your country, I want to express my appreciation on this US memorial day.

    To serve in itself is praise worthy.

    You relinquished your voice of approval or disapproval of government and yet were willing to sacrifice that last measure of devotion if and when called upon.

    Those of us who have family and friends touched by tragic loss of loved ones are no less grieved than the fellow soldiers at arms who have seen the brave "... cross over the river and rest beneath the shade of the trees."

    They went with songs to the battle, they were young.
    Straight of limb, true of eyes, steady and aglow.
    They were staunch to the end against odds uncounted,
    They fell with their faces to the foe.

    They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
    Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
    At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
    We will remember them. ​
    Laurence Binyon's poem "For the Fallen"​
     
  2. blackbird

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    Agedman----I don't mean any disrespect to your thread---but Memorial Day is day set aside to remember those who gave their lives and who died in combat for our United States of America!!

    The REAL heroes are those who are still on the beach!!----General Omar Bradley commenting on D-Day casualities on D + 3

    Even three days after the invasion---and with the "Front" 5 miles inland---Bradley's subordinate officers encouraged him----"Sir! Its still too dangerous where we are---we need to get back to the ship!!"
     
  3. ktn4eg

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    In memory of those who gave their lives in the defense of our freedom:

    "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." --- John 15:13
     
  4. agedman

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    Perhaps I did not make that this is a US memorial (Decoration Day) more clear in the first statement.

    Certainly, the historical day is to honor the dead. However, the day goes beyond the fact that the dead gave their all. It is a time the living gather and a celebration of life and living take place.

    The soldier who has lived knowing not why they lived and their fellow patriot did not, is no less heroic nor needs less honor.

    That does not diminish the honor nor respect of those who gave "the last measure of devotion." The heroic still living just get to put off their last measure of devotion for a short while longer.

    A couple years ago, I buried a brother. He died in his early 60's after suffering from extended affects of the Vietnam war. He was given the mortal wound in 1968, but succumbed years latter. I am grateful that I had opportunity to give him honor while he yet lived for giving his life in 1968.
     
    #4 agedman, May 28, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: May 28, 2012
  5. Jon-Marc

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    As a veteran who came back physically and mentally intact, I am grateful to ALL who have served, are serving, died in combat, came back physically or mentally damaged for life, those like myself who were the fortunate ones to come back undamaged, and those who served without having to go to a war area.

    Let's not single out only the ones who have fought in wars or are fighting, and those who have died for their country. Yes, these are great heros, but there are many others who love this great nation and have served in one military or another and would gladly die for their country if necessary. We need to remember all who serve or have served--regardless of whether they died or not, and regardless of whether they fight in a war or not. ALL of our military personal (in my opinion) are worthy of our respect--even if you don't think of them as heros. I'm no hero; I just served my country the way they chose for me and was fortunate enough not to have to fight in a war. I was in during the Viet Nam war.
     
  6. Don

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    Amen.

    And allow me to add: The ones who kept the home fires burning. The parents, wives, husbands, children, family, who waited. The ones who made sure there were beans, bullets, and beds, even though they thought they weren't really contributing.

    We owe you all a debt of gratitude, and will never forget.
     
  7. kfinks

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    My nephew served two tours in Iraq as a Navy corpsman embedded with a Marine Corps unit. His perspective follows:

    "This day is a big deal to me... Many have been there and tried to put the pieces back together, tried to save the life of a friend, picked up what was left over and put it in a bag... Staying up all night shooting wild dogs so they would not eat scattered remains so when light came back up they could be gathered... Telling him its ok as his last breath is exhaled.. The smell of blood forever stains many hands and minds... American blood has been spilled all over the world so we may say and do what we want. I am forever thankful to those who never made it home alive... For they are Heroes and someone for our kids to look up to."
     
  8. HankD

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    Amen Jon,

    My story is similar to yours. I don't like to say that I am a Vietnam Era vet (and certainly not a hero) though I was in during that time of conflict because I was state-side involved in Information and Intelligence along what was then known as the BMEWS (Ballistic Missile Early Warning System) along the Canadian border across the pond to Thule Greenland (My duty was in upstate NY).

    In fact, I had a very cushy job and though I was an enlisted man I had my own room, and worked mostly with civilians sometimes less than 40 hours per week. I had a permanent Class A pass along with several other priviledges (had a car on-base). I could go off base anytime and I could go home almost any weekend I wished.

    Though we knew others were dying we were all made to realize (from cook to scientist) by the brass that our work was an integral part and vital to the defense of our beloved nation.

    1 Samuel 30
    24 For who will hearken unto you in this matter? but as his part is that goeth down to the battle, so shall his part be that tarrieth by the stuff: they shall part alike.
    25 And it was so from that day forward, that he made it a statute and an ordinance for Israel unto this day.​

    I salute all my brothers like yourself Jon who "tarried by the stuff".

    But yes, those who died in battle have a special place in our hearts.

    HankD
     
    #8 HankD, May 29, 2012
    Last edited: May 29, 2012
  9. padredurand

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    In the newsletter at work this morning....

    Yesterday was Memorial Day. The following was sent through a listserv for chaplains. It was written by the Rev. Norris Burkes, an Air Force chaplain for 18 years and now a chaplain with the California National Guard. It is a poignant reminder of why we celebrate Memorial Day and what sacrifices individuals and families have made for our country.

    CASUALTY NOTIFICATION TEAM:
    For me, Memorial Day has a face. It is the face of the family members
    whose loved one made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. Since 9/11,
    I’ve met these faces in at least 30 homes in my community.
    If I could introduce you to these families, I would. But because I can't,
    I'd like you to imagine today that you've joined my casualty notification
    team.

    We unite with our team of four inside a nondescript military office where
    we watch a training video, map our route to the home of a newly widowed
    woman and memorize our scripted lines. The commander will deliver the badnews, the medic will watch for signs of stress, and you and I will offer
    pastoral care.

    Within the hour of being paged out of our everyday routines, we drive our
    dark blue military sedan into a civilian neighborhood where we find an
    address that doesn’t want to be found. As we step from the car, we look
    much like a small parade formation, a living breathing cliché.
    We park a few hundred yards from the house and you use the walking time to ask me questions.

    "Will this notification be like your previous ones?" you ask. "How long
    will we stay?" and "How will the people respond?" you want to know. I tell
    you that the only certainty is that my past notifications will give us no
    working schematic for this day. Nothing about these no-notice visits is
    ever predictable.

    All I can say is that in the past I‘ve heard an anguished father launch
    into a political diatribe blaming the president for his son's death. I
    recall another visit where I interrupted a child's birthday party, and in
    yet another instance, I recount stopping a family's airport reunion to
    tell them their son wasn't on the plane.

    You shake your head and I stare at the Disney welcome mat while the
    commander knocks on the door. I catch a side-glance of the commander
    mouthing his script. It's a script that will go something like this:

    "Are you Mrs. John E. Jones?"
    "Yes."
    "Is your husband Capt. John E. Jones?"
    "Yes."
    "Ma'am, the Secretary of the Army has asked me to express his deep
    regret."

    It may seem rote, but the script is the only way we all get through
    without cracking. Our effort is compassionate, but professional. Of
    course, it'll be unusual if we aren't interrupted by the sobbing screams
    of denial, but we will stay with our lines until they are delivered.
    Fortunately, you're not a part of this team today. Gratefully this column
    is just a composite script of several of my team experiences.

    However, it is a script that churns in the mind of every person who has
    ever served in the military. Every person who wears the uniform of this
    country fears that their family may one day hear these words of regret
    from a team such as ours. Yet, despite their fear, they deploy. They do
    their jobs and most of them come home.

    So, as we pause this weekend to memorialize the sacrifices made by these
    few, let us imagine being on the color guard at the funeral as a stiff
    commander accepts a folded flag from his detail and presents it to this
    family:

    "On behalf of the president of the United States and a grateful nation,"
    he says, "please accept this flag as a symbol of our appreciation for
    service to our country. God bless you and this family, and God bless the United States of America."
     
  10. saturneptune

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    One can only imagine the thoughts going through the head of someone assigned to this duty. That is one aspect of duty that I can only imagine, having never been involved. It all comes down to the idea that freedom, liberty, and protecting the Constitution comes at a very high price. It is the price of the person who gave his or her life, the families, and the comrades who saw him or her fall.

    This thread makes it quite clear why each and every citizen should be eternally grateful for members of our armed forces. This has nothing to do with the politics of the given conflict. Whether the Revolutionary War, WW2, or Vietnam, each person went off to a land that they never vistied, or in some cases, ever heard of. They had one reason in mind for going, to protect our freedom.

    People who blur the lines between the dedication of service members and politicians who decided to get into this or that conflict are misguided at best, and do a disservice to the memory of our soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines. This was really brought home when returning service members from Vietnam became the object of ridicule in the early 70s. Again, they were coming back home having done the job they were told to do. Everyone of them deserve our deepest respect.

    Questions like why did President Johnson get us so involved or why didn't President Nixon get us out of the war sooner are another subject, and should never have been reflected in our treatment of these returning warriors.
     
  11. HAMel

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    Thank you, agedman. My father was a career Marine serving in WW II and Korea retiring in 1961. His older brother served in WW II enlisting in the Army. His younger brother served in Korea. I was the Vietnam Era. My wife's oldest brother was a Marine. A Helicopter Crew Chief who gave his all in 1966. One can search google for Robert Ray Telfer and he comes up.

    The military isn't what it used to be but a good experience for any young man.
     

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