Indeed watching this is always extraordinary to see, in its own scale it reminds me of the amazing turnout that Ronald Reagan had when his body returned to California for its final ride to his resting place.
Americans see heroes in all those who do selfless acts to protect the freedom of all. It was a hard lesson that built shame in an entire generation when Americans boo'ed Vets returning from Viet Nam, it took a long time for us to realise the difference between the dedication of offering ones life in serving his country and the politics that govern such acts. When the US finally understood the difference between the two, heroes were born out of men who did what the country asked of them, no matter the politics behind it.
We lost 58 thousand men in a battle that tore the country apart in so many ways. Today, no matter what the poitics, the men serving will receive the gratitude of a thankful country, separating the soldiers from the politicians is something that opened the eyes of our citizens and I pray never again will we confuse the two.
Having a volunteer military and people willing to signup even in these scarey and confusing times says everything I need to know about the character of the men and women in uniform. STRANGE AS IT MAY SOUND, we soon will have "enlisted" who were not old enough to really remember 9-11 clearly, to many teenagers, the attacks of that day are something learned in history class and have little more meaning that the writings of WW2 and the Civil Rights Movement.
As I continue to work for the Navy and see our sailors train and live aboard our base, as I watch night time touch and go flights of massive planes in total darkness, as I stand there and watch an F-18 lanched only feet from my body as every bone and nurve trembles - do to the powerful engines at full throttle - I wonder where these young men and women will be in 6 months, how different their lives will be and I can only imagine the fear and pride their families feel. It is the giving of self and family we honor in every memorial parade held across the country, the miles of lines formed by people just wanting to say thank you to someone they never knew, but understood they gave the ultimate price for our freedom, it is the waving of the flag as a heroes passes by that is our only way of thanking them for their giving everything they had for people they would only meet postumously in a tribute that they earned, and hopefully their families would see the thank you expressed at the side of the road in the final goodbye to a hero.
This video did say a lot for the way we reflect on the contributions of others. It doesn't reflect politics, it does not express moral values or party stances, it says thank you to someone willing to fight battles in distant lands so that we don't have to fight them here. It does make us proud to see as well - these events are rarely coordinated, they just happen and luckily we see such events for soldiers returning home in one piece and able to march in a welcome home ceremony, thank God that we more of the latter events than the prior. I finally am seeing the term hero shyed away from Sports figures who do well at leading a clean life and teaching children right from wrong by speaking and living right: these people are role models surely, but heroes should be set aside for those who truly earn it.
Thanks for sharing Mick.