We gave each of our fallen comrades a fitting memorial and mourned their loss. Each time, I knew these heroes left wives, husbands, children and other loved ones behind. They were all volunteers and each had their reasons for joining the Army and defending their country. They all had great plans for the future, but none of them had planned on dying in combat. These soldiers will never see their children graduate from high school, will never attend their weddings, will never coach their little league baseball teams.
What is a hero? My heroes are the young men who faced the issues of war and possible death, and then weighed those concerns against obligations to their country. Citizen-soldiers, who interrupted their personal and professional lives at their most formative stage, in the timeless phrase of the Confederate Memorial in Arlington National Cemetery, 'not for fame of reward, not for place of for rank, but in simple obedience to duty, as they understood it.'
Every morning, I get up, get out of bed, and get on my knees and thank God for waking up in America ... (She is) the light of the world ... A nation of heroes ... The real stars are wearing body armor on top of their battle dress uniforms in 130 degree heat and they do not have stunt doubles to come in for them when the going gets rough and the bullets and the shrapnel start flying. They are the real stars, fighting terrorism and trying to free a nation.
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