…it must constantly be paid for in pain, blood, and lives.

This Memorial Day weekend, let us not only celebrate and remember the sacrifices of those soldiers, sailors, and airmen that have given their lives for this country and all it stands for, but the people behind them.  The wives, families, and friends that they left behind with the memories of their passing and lives should also be remembered.  Often, it is the ones left behind that carry the most pain.

My father is a Korean War Veteran.  He doesn’t speak of what went on over there – he prefers to remain silent on the horrors that he witnessed.  He gave my mother a picture, which I now have, of him in Korea.

I had two cousins that were in Vietnam.  One didn’t come back, and the other one probably shouldn’t have.  Their respective mothers keep pictures on the mantle.

One of my friends spent two tours in Iraq.  He made it back without a problem, but I know the unit he was with.  He saw some action, but I’m too polite to ask him what happened over there.

Everyone reading this post knows someone within their family or circle of friends that has been in the military.  Those families that have their sons & daughters in the military dread that knock on the door or the ring of the phone telling them that someone they love is gone.  Even though this may not come to pass, this is their sacrifice – the waiting for that notice that they pray will never come.

These people all deserve our thanks – living and the dead – for their respective sacrifices for the freedom we all enjoy.