This from a High school classmate..
Worthy of the Sacrifice
by John C. Fitts
I was born during World War II in which my father served as a member of the U. S. Navy. I was a small child during the Korean Conflict (War?) and remember very little. The war that was personal to me was Viet Nam. I did not serve in the military but knew many who did. I remember the “war at home” over the war in Southeast Asia. I remember the casualty lists, the POW lists, the images on the evening television every night. I also remember the shameful treatment of the soldiers returning home. In the past few years I have known personally the debilitating effects that remain of this horrible national experience.
The atmosphere with the Gulf War, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan is so different. While the nation may not be totally united in our presence there, there is agreement in the welcoming of the returning
soldiers. And while there is yet more to do to help the veterans, our concern for them is greater than in the past. Stories of public displays of recognizing their service and sacrifice are on the airwaves and in print. Too often these displays are just an outward show or superficial. We need to make sure they are truly being helped.
The words of W. H. Auden’s two lines struck me as very appropriate. If we are going to ask men and women to fight and die for us, then shouldn’t our lives reflect our gratitude, and not just our words?
Epitaph for the Unknown Soldier by W. H. Auden
To save this world you asked this man to die;
Would this man, could he see you now, ask why?