Duty, Honor, Country
77 Years Ago
Every so often I run across stories and see film about the D-Day Normandy invasion. As time passes my thoughts about these stories, the pictures and movies leaves me feeling so humbled and honored to have grown up in the shadow of these great men. I find myself looking into the eyes of those young men as they stand in their landing craft knowing that for many, this would be there last day on earth. Someone once said that a hero is someone who is scared shitless, yet finds the courage and sense of duty to press on with the job at hand.These are sacrifices that must be remembered and celebrated. Anyone who believes that soldiers love the glory of war, has never stepped into a Higgins boat headed for an Omaha Beach, never sat in the cockpit of a Huey helicopter flying into a hostile landing zone under fire watching comrades being shot out of the sky in front of them. They have never walked between the thousands of gravestones of a military cemetery.
What makes all these sacrifices so hard to live with is knowing that recent generations of Americans are not being taught about them. The soldier does not glorify war. Duty, honor and country is chiseled in stone at West Point, a reminder to us all that the price of freedom is high.
I ask myself: ‘how many believe in this? How many would accept the mortal danger of combat to defend our country?’ The answer should scare the hell out of us. Our children are being taught that America is not exceptional. I leave it to your imagination to consider what a world without the United States would look like. As President Ronald Reagen once said: “If we lose freedom here, there is no place to escape to. This is the last stand on earth.”
April 17, 2021