Monday, May 30, 2016

In Honor of Our Fallen Heroes

This Memorial Day, I am so grateful to those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the service of their country.  And I am endlessly thankful that this guy was not one of them.
This photo is circa 1980, when my husband was in flight school.
My husband was a Naval Aviator for the first decade or so of our marriage.  He went on one four-month deployment (we called them "cruises" back then--but believe me, the aircraft carrier ones did not resemble the Carnival variety in the least), when our oldest son was a year old and we were about four months away from welcoming son #2.
While his father was away flying jets off a carrier, I constantly showed our
firstborn pictures so he would recognize his dad when he came home. 
One day, I followed him into a room and watched as he picked up this
wallet photo and murmured, "Daddy."  (Ow!  My heart hurts.)
Not too long after that cruise, my husband's squadron transitioned from the A-7 to the F-18, so he got to be a land-lubber for a while as he went through training.  And then he became a flight instructor.  So he did periodically have long detachments (weeks of bombing exercises in the deserts out west, for instance), and he worked long days; but he was home with us for the most part.

We lucked out; most Navy families had/have to endure many more separations than we did, and longer ones, in the course of a career.  And many other Navy families had/have to endure losses that I have trouble even imagining.

Yesterday, an old Navy friend of my husband's, a former fellow F-18 pilot, posted a tribute to their fallen buddies (he lists them by their "call signs"--the sometimes funny nicknames that sprang from inside jokes the guys shared).  It is so beautiful and poignant that I thought I'd share it with you today, in honor of all of our fallen heroes:

Tremendously humbled with a deep debt of gratitude on this weekend of reflection and remembering all American Patriots (like Spike) who sacrificed their all at the altar of Freedom! My prayers this Memorial Day weekend are especially with the families of great Naval Aviator friends, warriors and patriots who lost their lives serving their country: BJ, Bone, Nuke, Gramps, Turbo, Bubes, Crazy, Rip, Cashman and too many others----you will NEVER be forgotten and my life and the lives of soooo many are better because of each of you. I pray for the peace of the families of all these heroes who will endure yet another day of grief and pain without them. May God bless and comfort you all!!!

God bless you Spike, BJ, Bone, Nuke, Gramps, Turbo, Bubes, Crazy, Rip, Cashman...along with countless others.  And God bless America.


  1. God bless all the fallen, and praise Him your husband isn't one of them. I hope you have had a wonderful Memorial Day.