Salute

Discussion in 'Military' started by Jimmyeatworld, May 26, 2005.

  1. Jimmyeatworld
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    Jimmyeatworld Silver Member

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    This is a true account written by Army Captain John Rasmussen. There is more if you follow the link.

    http://www.saintsandheroes.com/stoptosalute/

    It was raining "cats and dogs" and I was late for physical training.
    Traffic was backed up at Fort Campbell, Ky., and was moving way too slowly.
    I was probably going to be late and I was growing more and more impatient.

    The pace slowed almost to a standstill as I passed Memorial Grove, the site built to honor the soldiers who died in the Gander airplane crash, the worst redeployment accident in the history of the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault).

    Because it was close to Memorial Day, a small American flag had been placed in the ground next to each soldier's memorial plaque.

    My concern at the time, however, was getting past the bottleneck,
    getting out of the rain and getting to PT on time.

    All of a sudden, infuriatingly, just as the traffic was getting started again,
    the car in front of me stopped. A soldier, a private of course,
    jumped out in the pouring rain and ran over toward the grove.

    I couldn't believe it! This knucklehead was holding up everyone for who knows what kind of prank. Horns were honking. I waited to see the butt-chewing that
    I wanted him to get for making me late.

    He was getting soaked to the skin. His BDUs were plastered to his frame.
    I watched-as he ran up to one of the memorial plaques, picked up the small
    American flag that had fallen to the ground in the wind and the rain,
    and set it upright again.

    Then, slowly, he came to attention, saluted, ran back to his car, and drove off.
    I'll never forget that incident. That soldier, whose name I will never know,
    taught me more about duty, honor, and respect than a hundred books or a thousand lectures.

    That simple salute -- that single act of honoring his fallen brother and his flag --
    encapsulated all the Army values in one gesture for me. It said, "I will never forget.
    I will keep the faith. I will finish the mission. I am an American soldier."

    I thank God for examples like that.

    And on this Memorial Day,
    I will remember all those who paid the ultimate price for my freedom,
    and one private, soaked to the skin, who honored them.
     
    • Thank You! Thank You! x 1
  2. CSM
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    CSM Senior Member

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    Quite a story...and should be a lesson for some...there are some officers out there that would have chewed out the private and missed the lesson in it's entirety.
     
  3. archangel
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    archangel Guest

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    That story brought tears to my eyes...must be getting old!
     
  4. wolie21m
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    wolie21m Rookie

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    Sent a tingle don my back.
     
  5. Jimmyeatworld
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    Jimmyeatworld Silver Member

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    I came across another interesting Memorial Day story. You never know where you'll find a veteran.

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20050529/ap_on_re_us/wwi_veteran

    CHARLOTTE HALL, Md. - Memorial Day parade organizers were considering using actors to represent veterans of World War I when they learned about 103-year-old Lloyd Brown — one of the last living veterans of the war.

    Brown plans to ride in the parade Monday in Washington to represent the rest of the 4.7 million U.S. servicemen who took part in the Great War. He is one of the 30 who are still alive, according to an unofficial estimate by the
    "World War I people are getting scarce," Brown said. "Nothing can be done about that."

    Brown was 16 when he lied about his age so he could join the Allied cause in 1918. His Maryland driver's license still lists his birth date as October 7, 1899, instead of the correct 1901.

    "Everybody was patriotic; everybody wanted to join," Brown told The Washington Post. "Those who joined were local heroes, well received on the public streets."

    Brown still remembers patrolling the North Atlantic for enemy submarines aboard the USS New Hampshire.

    He reenlisted after the war as a Navy musician, and played cello in Australia as a member of an admiral's orchestra. He later served as a firefighter in the District of Columbia, and sold antiques in Charlotte Hall, in southern Maryland.

    Brown retains enough white hair to comb. He still has a driver's license but favors a golf cart to drive to the end of his driveway to pick up the mail.

    He lives alone but his daughter, Nancy Espina, checks on him every day. Son-in-law Thomas Espina said Brown doesn't allow anything to bother him too much, including aging.

    "I don't consider it a long life," Brown said. "I feel as though there are a lot of people around my age."

     

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