Service to Our Fallen and Their Familes

May 29th, 2006 by xformed

Last year I came across an article about a group of women who are an institution, and like their mostly hidden existance: The Arlington Ladies.

Here is my post, copied from the archives, as my Memorial Day tribute to those who serve in a quiet, but special way:

The American Spectator of May 2005. A “random” pick up from the magazine rack. Memorial Day approaching. Page 12 – Humbleness defined. I know nothing is coincidental. The article is “The Arlington Ladies – American Voluteerism at Its Most Moving.”

By Shawn Macomber Published 5/27/2005 12:09:54 AM THE STORY OF THE ARLINGTON LADIES stretches back to a day in 1948 when Air Force Chief of Staff General Hoyt Vandenberg happened upon the funeral of an airman at Arlington. What he saw disturbed him: There wasn’t a soul at the service, save the chaplain and the Honor Guard members conducting it.”
At the link above, you can read the article. Here’s the short version: Beginning in 1948, the wife of Air Force Chief of Staff, General Hoyt Vanderberg, Gladys, began attending funerals of the fallen at Arlington National Cemetary so no one would not have someone at their funeral, and, even if they did, the Arlington Ladies would be there to support the family as necessary. In 1972, the Army Arlington Ladies “stood up.” In 1985, the Navy began it’s “watch.” The Marines will always have a representative from the Commandant’s Office at every Marine funeral at Arlington. Compassion comes to mind. The women who have done this seek no recognition in these forums. They are there for the fallen, not for us. It is but one more example of the bond of the military family so many of us have been a part of, or are still. It is a read fitting for such a weekend, to show how the spouses of our military have honored our dead.

This year, The American Specator presents another fine article, quoting Ben Stein as he spoke to families who have lost service members.

A bad day for me is when I get stuck in traffic or have a toothache or notice that I have gained weight or my teenage son is surly.

A bad day for you is realizing that the only man or woman you have ever loved is gone for this lifetime.

There are more fine words in this article. Read and consider the message for us all in it.

Update: Greyhawk published some last letters home from those who aren’t with us. Iwth that post are also links to contirbute to the family members left behind.

Smash has a lengthy and excellent post about taking the Scouts to the National Cememtary at Ft Rosecrans in San Diego today. He had the opportunity to make a headstone into a living memory to a Scoutmaster while he was there.

H/T: Eagle1 from a MilBlogs post.

Thanks to Little Green Footballs for the opportunity to share such information with his readership.

This entry was posted on Monday, May 29th, 2006 at 7:45 am and is filed under History, Military. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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