Memorial Day (USA)

Here are some images to reflect upon this holiday weekend.  It’s not National Barbeque Weekend, but rather Memorial Day. The Memorial Day holiday actually falls on Monday. Now comes a selection of photos from the Internet that remind us of what we should be memorializing. That war comes at a terrible human cost among both the living and the dead.

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The young man below is Christian Golczynski, age 8, of Lewisburg, Tennessee, the son of Marine Staff Sgt. Marcus Golczynski who was killed by a landmine in Iraq, 2007. memorial day

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The next photo below is so iconic that it is often thought to have been staged. The scene, in fact, is quite real. The man in the grave is U.S. Army Ranger, Sgt. James John Regan of Manhasset, NY who was killed by an IED in Iraq, February 2007.  That’s his fiancée lying on top of his grave four months later. She was photographed by a passerby on Memorial Day 2007. The photographer said that he found her sitting on the ground, crying, and talking to the gravestone. On his way back past that section, he saw her again, and took this photo. It’s so real in its honesty, that the photo is considered controversial and some people want to see it suppressed. You can visit Sgt. Regan in Arlington National Cemetery, Section 60, site 8535. Section 60 holds the fallen from both Middle East conflicts. mary-mchugh-james-regan

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The eagle photo below is not a Photoshop image, it is real.  A bald eagle was captured on film early one morning in the veteran’s cemetery at Ft. Snelling, Minnesota.  I found it under the caption “A Sentinel Guards its Sons”.  The man buried under that stone is World War II veteran, Sgt. Maurice Ruch (USAAF) of St. Anthony, Minnesota, who passed in 2008.

http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=28667179

http://www.startribune.com/the-eagle-couldn-t-have-picked-a-better-person/124543223/

Fort Snelling

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She is Katherine Cathey, the wife of U.S. Marine 2nd Lt. James Cathey of Reno, Nevada who was killed in Iraq.  Mrs. Cathey was 6-months pregnant at the time. This photo really needs no further explanation, but I’ll direct my readers to the very moving photo series of Mrs. Cathey’s vigil found at this link:  http://freedom-hall.org/more-of-the-story-on-katherine-cathey-marine-1st-lt-catheys-wife/  (UPDATE: the link is broken.)

9-katherine-cathey-james-cathey-todd-heisler-4

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And finally, an unknown patriot salutes a fallen hero. patriot

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The Angel of Death

(UPDATED BECAUSE OF A BROKEN LINK)

A veteran is someone who, at one point, wrote a blank check made payable to ‘The United States of America ‘ for an amount of ‘up to and including their life.’ That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.

This is a story that you will continue to remember for many years after you have read it. It’s a narrative written by Lt. Colonel George Goodson, USMC (Ret.) who had the duty of appearing on people’s doorstep to tell them that their son’s were dead. He was an official Casualty Notification Officer. Several versions of this story have been floating around the Internet for years, but it turns out that Lt. Col. Goodson and his story are quite real. I have included the link to the original published article below which is well worth reading and reflecting upon. (JS: THAT LINK IS NOW BROKEN, BUT I HAVE PASTED ITS CONTENTS BELOW) Although it dates from the end of the Vietnam War, Colonel Goodson’s experience is just as relevant today. Thank God every day that you will never have this Colonel’s job. Continue reading