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Happy Memorial Day

May 28, 2007

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I just got off the phone with my husband’s grandmother. She’s still quite teary on Memorial Day, thirty-six years after the death of her son. I knew it would make her very happy to hear that DH and the girls were at our town’s very well-attended memorial for fallen soldiers.

Until I met my husband, I didn’t really know anyone personally who had been closely touched by war. And really, though he has been (his father, an enlisted serviceman, was killed in action), it’s kind of a vague association because he never knew his father, nor did he grow up fatherless. His grandmother has always been fiercely dedicated to preserving his father’s memory, though, so we do have a very good idea of the kind of man he was. Shortly before his death, he had the choice of spending his R&R in Hawaii, or at home, and he chose to go and hold his baby boy, born during his absence.

While I do wonder who and where my husband would be had he been raised by this man, his biological father, of course I’m grateful that he ended up here. It is kind of amazing to ponder the difference that one life makes…

I’m grateful, too, that so many have believed that freedom was worth their lives, and fought for it even if it meant giving up those lives, their families, their future. Andrew Grimson says it so eloquently:

But when the Americans speak of freedom, we should not imagine, in our cynical and worldly-wise way, that they are merely using that word as a cloak for realpolitik. They are not above realpolitik, but they also mean what they say.

These formidable people think freedom is so valuable that it is worth dying for.

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