Memorial Day. The day we veterans remember the fallen. It’s also the day that selfish and entitled civilians demand a three day weekend and barbecue.
I never had to watch a brother fall in combat, and I thank God for that every single day. I went to every Fallen Comrade ceremony. I helped some brothers take their last flight home, embraced by the Stars and Stripes. I held some of my friends when they broke down after watching their brothers make the ultimate sacrifice.
I spent several weeks on Checkpoint One in Baghdad, standing guard, inspecting locals, and routinely patrolling. One day, I was sent back to camp to rest by a Specialist and spent the next few days at the Pit while the 1st Cavalry began their rotation. When I went back to the checkpoint, I learned that the soldier that volunteered to relieve me was killed in action the day he sent me home.
This weekend is for you, Specialist. Til Valhalla.