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As Memorial approaches, and as I get older and older, I am certainly going to try my best to go for a little "lone scout" ride... My problem is, I remember too much...

So, for all you guys that served and those that are still serving, my heart felt thanks for the difficult job you have....


I remember...


Memorial Day is their day, isn't it?  It is supposed to be the day a 

grateful nation pauses to quietly thank the more than one million men 

and women who have died in military service to their country since 

the Revolutionary War.


Or is it the day the beach resorts kick into high gear for the summer 

season, the day the strand is covered by fish-belly white people 

basting themselves in coconut oil, the day the off-season rates end 

and the weekend you can't get in a seaside seafood restaurant with 

anything less than a one hour wait.


Or is it one of the biggest shopping center sales days of the year, a 

day when hunting for a parking space is the prime sport for the 

holiday stay-at-homers?


Or is it the weekend when more people will kill themselves on the 

highways than any other weekend and Highway Patrol troopers work 

overtime picking up the pieces?


I think the men and women who died for us would understand what we do 

with their day.  I hope they would, because if they wouldn't, if they 

would have insisted that it be a somber, respectful day of 

remembrance, then we have blown it and dishonored their sacrifice.


I knew some of those who died, and the guys I knew would have 



They liked a sunny beach and a cold beer and a hot babe in a black 

bikini, too.  They would have enjoyed packing the kids, the 

inflatable rafts, the coolers, and the suntan lotion in the car and 

heading for the lake.  They would have enjoyed staying at home and 

cutting the grass and getting together with some friends and cooking 

some steaks on the grill, too.


But they didn't get the chance.  They blew up in the Marine Barracks 

in Beirut and died in the oily waters of the Persian Gulf.  They 

caught theirs at the airstrip in Grenada in the little war everyone 

laughed at.  They bought the farm in the I Drang Valley and on 

Heartbreak Ridge, Phu Tai and at Hue.  They froze at the Chosin 

Reservoir and were shot at the Pusan Perimeter.  They drowned in the 

surf at Omaha Beach or fell in the fetid jungles of Guadalcanal. 

They died in the ice and snow of the Bulge and the Vosges Mountains. 

They were at the Somme and at San Juan  Hill, Phu Tai, Qui Nhon, and at Gettysburg and at Cero Gordon and at Valley Forge.


They couldn't be here with us this weekend, but I think they would 

understand that we don't spend the day in tears and heart-wrenching 

memorials.  They wouldn't want that.  Grief is not why they died. 

They died so we could go fishing.  They died so another father could 

hold his laughing little girl over the waves.  They died so another 

father could toss a baseball to his son in their backyard while the 

charcoal is getting white.  They died so another buddy could drink a 

beer on his day off.  They died so a family could get in the station 

wagon and go shopping and maybe get some ice cream on the way home.


They won't mind that we have chosen their day to have our first big 

outdoor party of the year.  But they wouldn't mind, either, if we 

took just a second and thought about them.


Some will think of them formally, of course.  Wreaths will be laid in 

small, sparsely attended ceremonies in military cemeteries and at 

monuments at state capitols and in small town's squares.  Flags will 

fly over the graves, patriotic words will be spoken and a few people 

there will probably feel a little anger that no more people showed 

up.  They'll think no one else remembers.


But we do remember.  We remember Smitty and Chico, and Davey and the 

guys who died.  We remember the deal we made:  If we buy it, we said, drink a beer for me.


I'll do it for you, guys.  I'll drink that beer for you today, and 

I'll sit on that beach for you, and I'll check out the girls for you 

and, just briefly, I'll think of you.  I won't let your memory spoil 

the trip but you'll be on that sunny beach with me today.


I will not mourn your deaths this Memorial Day, my friends.  Rather, 

I'll celebrate the life you gave me.


This Bud's for you, brother!


-Author Unknown-

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i see your still helping. good on you and yours. and THANK YOU ALL!!!

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