Memorial Day is a day to reflect on the price of freedom. A price is always paid for someone else to be free. This holiday was established for us to thank those that have paid high prices for us to have the opportunities we have.
These Memorial Day thoughts on freedom were submitted anonymously by one who served.
“Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13
“Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you: Jesus Christ and the American G.I. One died for your soul; the other for your freedom! Freedom is not free; it is bought with the blood of another.” Anonymous
I have had the privilege of serving in one of the most elite Army aviation units in the world and each one of us would have given our lives to protect the life of a brother—and for you to be able to enjoy your freedoms. In December 2000, I was released from duty on a Family Care Separation due to being awarded custody of my two young sons.
At that time, I had no intention of leaving the military, but it was in the best interest of my children to do so. Just over nine months later America would be attacked by a force that would falter at nothing in order to destroy the heart of America.
On 9/11/01 the lives of everyone I know and love were changed forever. As the events were unfolding on 9/11, it was like a punch to the throat. I knew my brothers were going to deploy very quickly to wherever in the world this attack had originated. It was obvious our national interests were under attack based on the targets hit.
Making a phone call to my former unit wishing them well and offering prayers for their safety in their mission, I also made the decision that I would return to my unit to serve. My family situation had changed making that possible.
Mom and I had a discussion when I called to let her know my decision. She told me I couldn’t go back in the Army because I had two boys who needed me. My response was that was where I was needed. She persisted, as did I.
My argument was “she could explain to the families of those who had just lost their lives that my life was more important than those lost.” I completely understood her concern as a mother who had already had one son deployed during the first Desert Storm. She was undoubtedly concerned. I did what I needed to do.
February 22, 2002, my unit lost an aircraft with 14 souls on board. March 4, 2002, I lost a very close friend on a mountaintop in Afghanistan due to injuries sustained from enemy fire. Though I have lost several brothers in arms, I would not change any of it. I know all of them would, without a doubt, do it all over again for God, Country, and Family.
These men gave their lives along with so many others I did not know to protect the rights and freedoms many Americans take for granted each and every day. Even with the physical pain and heartache, I deal with daily—even should it have cost my life here, I would do it all again for your rights and freedoms. Every American G.I. signs that blank check up to and including his life, for your rights and freedoms as Americans.
“I serve with the memory and pride of those who have gone before me for they loved to fight, fought to win and would rather die that quit. ”Nightstalkers Don’t Quit (Night Stalker Creed)
Even greater, Jesus Christ knew His life was the price to be paid to wash all our sins away and give us eternal life, to free us from slavery to the things that keep us from living the life God desires for us here, and for eternity in His presence. Without His undying love, and resurrection, we would never have this hope—and He did it for us while we were His enemy. “But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
*All images are used with permission