I wanted to thank you for sacrificing your life, your health, your honor, your emotions, your heart, your limbs for this country that we call the Land of The Free. I wanted you to know that everything you did ‘mattered’, it made a difference, it gave hundreds of thousands, and perhaps millions the chance to live when you had to die.
I wanted to say that the burning hole that filled your heart was not in vain and that despite the vagrancies of a few self consumed children, there are many, more than many, who truly appreciate that you gave your life so that we could live. Do not be grieved. Do not be fearful that we are a fallen country, that your sacrifice was in vain, for even if you saved one life, it was more than anyone else can claim. What we seem to have forgotten is that to save even One, is worth the consequence of that action.
I wanted to say that even though you had such a short life, and you had such high spirits to find salve for the brokenness inside you, you made a huge impact on one life – mine. When I am down, I think of you. When I am in trials, I think of you. When I am melancholy, I look at your picture and I find peace. You were an amazing dad. An amazing man.
You were stricken with multiple cancers. You suffered miserably. Your heart was broken by the terror you witnessed, and yet, you were able to try and put it behind you, more pain, more suffering, more violence than most experience in twenty lifetimes. Thank you daddy. I wish I could soften that pain.
I think of you every day even though you passed nearly forty years ago. I think of how you were my personal savior, my hero, my strength, my rock amidst the storms. I miss you terribly and wish you could help guide me through my own trials, but take comfort in knowing that you are still with me in spirit, if not in the physical form.
Thank you daddy.
I know that sometimes you had fun while serving this country, sometimes you found humor, and sometimes you found death and hardship, but you persevered – until God took you while you were yet so young, I know that you watch over me every single day of my life. I want you to know that your sacrifice means everything to us even if some of us don’t see it – but have patience, one day, I believe they will come around and see how much you gave for them, for me, for all of us. One day, they will come to understand that each man is unique to his calling, and that while there are the few who fail, there are many more who are so incredibly self sacrificing, so giving, so focused on making this world a place of good, that the Hillarys and the Obamas and the Bills and the Nixons and the Jacksons, and the Johnsons, well they are just a fly to be swat in the scheme of things. They are nothing. The proverbial specks of sand…
I wish you could be here today with your grandchildren and great grandchildren and even great-great grandchildren! What a legacy you have created, a vine of love, and of honor and of respect, that I can not ever be anything but humbled by your heart.
Thank you daddy.
I wish I had been older and wiser and could have asked you more questions, and listened harder, learned deeper and held your hand more often. I wish I could have you near me now in my trials and ask for your advice. I will forever hold you as my hero, and will try to honor your name through my children, their children, and for generations beyond. I will pass on everything I know in stories and anecdotes and hopefully, your memory will be passed for eternity to come.
Dear Daddy, I really wish you were here with me today, because I’ve made so many stupid mistakes and I think maybe I would have been better if you had been there to guide me and set my path straighter. Because right now it really, really sucks.
I wish the military had been brighter and more compassionate toward their people. I wish that you had not been a guinea pig in the Nevada nuclear tests. I wish that I could have learned more than the whisper of time I was given. I wish you could have had the wishes you wished for in your life and that maybe I could have shared some of those with you.
But most of all – I wish you were here with me today to take away the pain and make it right like you always did – because you were my – hero. And I miss you so terribly.