I dedicated these thoughts to the memory of all men and women who have lost their lives defending our nation. (Link to Taps below)

On Memorial Day, I will remember your death; I will honor the life you willingly traded to protect mine. I will pause to try to feel your family’s grief.

I will gather with others to make sense of your sacrifice. When I listen to a 21-gun salute and sing the National Anthem, I will try to imagine the last kisses, hugs, tears, and words you shared with your loved ones.

On Memorial Day, I will give thanks for your pride, strength, and courage to wear the military uniform and for your determination and commitment to carry out your mission.

I will encourage my friends to honor your life past Memorial Day. I will remind them that this “holiday” comes at a cost, your death.

On Memorial Day, I will do all of that, though how I wish I didn’t need to.

May you rest in peace, soldier.

Hector Ortiz

Stg., Army 84-87, 2AD, Hell On Wheels

 

Taps

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