For each soldier who goes down on the field I feel the pain it brings to their loved ones.
I've never lost a family member in combat. The devastation it must cause is only imaginary to me. But I've lost friends. Fellow soldiers I once served with. Their absence echoes in my heart daily.
We served together for freedom, with only the best intentions in mind. Yet it would be a lie to say that we were unselfishly putting our lives down on the line for our country. Every individual soldier has his own agenda; his own set of reasons for joining and his own set of reasons for staying. Rarely are they for something so blindly patriotic as just "wanting to serve my country." But I don't see why that would diminish each individual effort. The fact that we do risk or lose our lives in combat is enough to deserve the appreciation of every civilian out there.
I honor the life of every soldier who's been taken down while serving his country. You make me proud to be an american.