Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day

I was about 11 years old and my parents took us to Hawaii for a vacation. In those days, that was a huge deal and I was in awe of everything.

One afternoon, right at dusk, we took a drive up to Punchbowl cemetery. As you probably know, it's located in an extinct volcano crater sitting above the city of Honolulu.

We drove in, and as we were just starting to walk around, the bells began tolling Taps. It was one of those moments that send goosebumps up and down your arms.

Here I was, a young child in this exotic place, the sun was setting and the sky showed a range of colors I will never forget. Then there was the music. I turned and saw a view of the Pacific with Diamond Head in the distance and this monument in front of me.

When I climbed the steps,
this is what I read

"The solemn pride
that must be yours
to have laid
so costly sacrifice
upon the alter
of freedom"

It was the first time in my young life that I understood, in my heart, the entire tragedy of war, and the incredible pain that we all suffer from these losses.

It imprinted on my brain, and I still remember it like it was yesterday.

If you've served,
know that we appreciate your sacrifice.

If you've lost loved ones,
my heart goes out to you.

Know that the loss isn't just yours,
but all of ours.



Judy and Emma said...

Nice thoughtful post.

Merikay said...

Well said.

Donna K said...

Very nice tribute. Well said.