Thursday, May 22, 2008

What We Do With What Has Been Given Is How We Honor Those Who Gave

Those of you who were following my Yahoo 360 blog last year may remember my post on the the Medal Of Honor Flag Presentation Ceremony for Jason Dunham at the National Museum of the Marine Corps . His company commander delivered one of the best speeches I have heard and I just have to resurrect it. The opening sentence itself is so powerful.

"All that we have has been given to us. What we do with what has been given to us is how we honor those who gave."

After the ceremony, I thanked Mrs. Dunham for sharing it with the public at the Museum. I tell people when I give tours and I point out Jason's photo on the Medal of Honor wall, that I told his mom I hoped if I were ever a mom, that I could be as good a mom as she was. I'm sure she probably thought I was some wacko. What I tell my tours, and what I couldn't articulate to Mrs. Dunham at the time, is what I meant by that comment.

If I am ever a parent, I hope that I can raise a child up to be unselfish enough to put his or her life on the line to save others. Now, no parent wants their child to be hurt or killed, I have been told having a child is like watching your heart walk around. However, I think it is such a testament to have raised up a selfless child with a sense of honor and duty. It says a lot about those parents who can let that child go, to go into a profession where they may be endangered or lose their lives because that child knows he or she will make a difference in someone else's life.

Despite the gloom and doom news coverage - - which has now pattered off to no news coverage because things are going better. I take heart in the positive stories. Like the photos and stories posted by a State Department PRC, showing a market place in Al Anbar with shops full of goods and people out shopping. When I see the good that is happening and how local Iraqis are taking steps to a better future, I see how our service men and women are being honored this Memorial Day Weekend.

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