Having been 18 years old, one time, then having three children who were 18, thinking about the men and women who make the courageous choice to serve in our military is humbling. Most enlist as young people, with their entire lives in front of them. Most in our life time have enlisted knowing our country is at war. I cannot imagine hugging one of my children goodbye knowing they were going into harm’s way and may not return. I cannot imagine holding tightly to my spouse knowing it may be the last time and then letting go!
So many have given their lives for our country to be free and for all people within our country to be free. Did you know more people died in our Civil War than any other war we’ve fought! It is estimated 625,000 people died in that effort. World War 1 had 116,516 deaths, while World War II had 405,399. The Korean Conflict cost us 36,516 patriots while Viet Nam was 58,209. Our current conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq all totaled is pushing 10,000 lives.
Every number represents a Mom’s child, a Father’s pride and joy. Each number is someone in a family portrait and each one is now a huge, gaping hole in a family’s heart. Each one is an empty seat at the table, so we can all eat in Freedom.
Remember those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for you and me to enjoy the freedoms of America. Read some history, read the constitution and do your part to protect what this nation is all about. It would be a shame if all those lives would be lost in vain. Thank you soldiers and families for your sacrifice.