Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Jennifer Hartline

5/25/2015 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A safe and solemn Memorial Day to all. May God continue to bless the United States of America

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland. Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight. I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families. Godspeed, and come home soon.

Highlights

By Jennifer Hartline

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

5/25/2015 (1 year ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Veterans, memorial day, heroes, soldiers, war, courage, Jennifer Hartline


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - I understand that it can be difficult for civilian families to relate to military folks and the military lifestyle.  It's hard to really grasp the emotional highs and lows, and the toll that military life takes on a family unless you've lived it.  Through no fault of their own, many civilians just don't get it, and how could they?

Until I lived through my husband's weeks of field training exercises, I didn't understand what it was like to be a temporary single mom, with him popping in and out of home life like a frequent visitor and having to get used to him being around again.

Until I lived through his deployment to Iraq in 2003, I could have never comprehended the heartache of saying goodbye to him in our doorway at 0300, closing the door behind him, and thinking to myself, "That might have been the last time I'll ever see him.  That just might have been it." 

Do you know how hard it was not to fling open the door and run after him?  I had two small children sound asleep in their bedroom, and their Mom sat up on the couch crying til dawn, begging the angels to keep my beloved safe.  I didn't know what I was supposed to do next.  Turned out, it was make breakfast.

Normal stuff of normal life fills the days of loved ones waiting at home for their soldiers who are "in theater" - that means in the war zone, in harm's way, in danger.  Not at home with you.  Yet every moment there lingers a fear in your heart, and a small lump in your throat.
 
Every day the prayer is the same, "Please Father, keep him safe today and bring him back home to me."  Every day you smile in front of your children whether you feel like smiling or not.  Whether you're worried or lonely or tired, you do your best to keep things "normal" for your kids.  And you remember that whatever you're going through is peanuts compared to what your soldier is enduring.

So while there are many things I don't expect the civilian world to understand, I do expect them to REMEMBER the sacrifices made by our uniformed heroes, the ones who go to the worst places on earth and do the most difficult and unpleasant jobs in order to protect us back here at home. 

Most of them are like my husband, in that they don't want public applause or thanks and they don't really need medals.  They truly appreciate the person who shakes their hand, looks them in the eye, and says, "Thank you for your service.  I'm glad you're home safe and sound."

They truly appreciate the people who look after their families while they are away.  The guy who mows the lawn for a soldier's wife; the woman who helps out with childcare once in a while or brings dinner over; the person in the housing office who takes pity and makes sure a repair gets done pronto. 

And in my case, the guy in the Rear Detachment (the soldiers in the unit who stay behind to help coordinate things) who comes over to this panic-stricken wife's house to seek out and destroy the red wasp flying around in the kitchen.  Really.  I was *this close* to needing a tranquilizer.

My husband will spend this Memorial Day quietly remembering the soldier whose body he escorted home to his family in Georgia the year we were married -- the one who died in a freak accident during a typical field exercise.  He knew it could have just as easily been him.  So did I.
 
He'll remember the soldiers who died in Iraq under his command, as well as the ones who were permanently injured.  He'll remember the nearly two dozen friends he's lost; the ones who did not come home alive.  Perhaps he'll wonder again why he did come home alive.

I'll spend Memorial Day thinking of all of them, and thanking God for their sacrifice and praying for their eternal rest.  I'll thank God again, for the millionth time that my beloved came back to me safe and sound.  And I'll pray for every hero currently in theater and beg Heaven's angels to stand watch and keep them safe.

And I'll remember my friend, Karin, who became a widow at age 34 with two little girls, and I'll remember how many, many families have lost the one they loved.  I hope they know, this day, that their hero is not forgotten.

My husband will never toot his own horn or draw attention to the sacrifices he's made and the sadness and loss he's endured as a soldier for his country, but I will.  We need some of the Brave here at home, too, and I hope there are more than a few left.

Thank you, to every man and woman who has fought and is currently fighting for our homeland.  Thank you for doing everything within your power to make sure I and my children can sleep safely tonight.  I love and appreciate you and I pray God's blessing on you and your families.  Godspeed, and come home soon.

Thank you, my darling, for being who you are -- a quietly brave and faithful hero.  I love you so much, and I'm so proud to be your wife.

A safe and solemn Memorial Day to all.  May God continue to bless the United States of America.We need to honor those who honor our nation with their heroic sacrifice.

-----

Jennifer Hartline is a grateful Catholic and a contributing writer for Catholic Online. 

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for August 2016
Universal:
Sports: That sports may be an opportunity for friendly encounters between peoples and may contribute to peace in the world.
Evangelization: Living the Gospel: That Christians may live the Gospel, giving witness to faith, honesty, and love of neighbor.



Comments


More U.S.

St Augustine on a Personal Relationship with Jesus Watch

Image of St Augustine

By Deacon Keith Fournier

But we too can encounter Christ in reading Sacred Scripture, in prayer, in the liturgical life of the Church. We can touch Christ's Heart and feel him touching ours. Only in this personal relationship with Christ, only in this encounter with the Risen One do we ... continue reading


Five-year-old invents 'Kindness Day' Watch

Image of Five-year-old boy treats officers to a lunch from Subway.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Five-year-old William Evertz Jr. saved up his allowance for several months in hopes of purchasing a Power Wheels police car but realized his money would better benefit others. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - On Wednesday, the Winslow Police Department in ... continue reading


Two nuns found murdered in Mississippi home Watch

Image of Police have found two nuns slain in a Mississippi home.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Two Catholic nuns have been found dead in their home after they didn't show up for their work. The pair worked as nurse practitioners out of state. Police are investigating the deaths of two Catholic nuns after they missed work. The pair were found together in a ... continue reading


1 city, 2 days, 52 OD's Watch

Image of Opioids in the United States have appeared in the form of elephant tranquilizers.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Heroin laced with carfentanil, the most potent commercial opioid known to be 10,000 times stronger than morphine, is being dealt on streets across the United States. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to CNN, carfentanil significantly slows breathing and is ... continue reading


The shocking NEW reason why young people are leaving church Watch

Image of The youth are leaving the church, but why?

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

It's a surprising find, but it's also true. Americans are giving up on God. A Pew survey reveals that half of the people who have quit going to church no longer believe in God. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - Nearly a quarter of the nation no longer attends ... continue reading


Massachusetts nun loses rosary to lesbian couple Watch

Image of Lesbian muggers rob nun of her rosary beads.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A Sister at the Daughters of Mary of Nazareth convent was mugged by a lesbian couple, who left with the nun's rosary. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to the <a ... continue reading


'Right Before I Die': Photographer reveals heartbreaking truth on taboo topic Watch

Image of One photographer captured people's dreams as they drew closer to death (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Photographer Andrew George decided to interview and photograph people close to death for a project titled "Right Before I Die." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - George's project earned an exhibit at the Museum of Tolerance in Los Angeles and he explained the ... continue reading


Deacon Keith Fournier: Jesus Walks with Us on the Dusty Road of Life Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith Fournier

We can learn a vital lesson from this account in the Gospel of Luke; one which can radically reorient our entire life. Jesus is always with us. He accompanies us on the Way of our daily life because He IS the Way. (John 14:6) But, we need our eyes to be opened. ... continue reading


Marian procession to commemorate birthday of Los Angeles Watch

Image of Los Angeles will hold a Marian procession and a votive Mass for the city's 235th anniversary.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The city of Los Angeles will get a Marian procession to mark its 235th anniversary on August 27. The city is named after Our Lady. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - The city of Los Angeles has a very long name. Officially, the city is known as, "The Town of Our ... continue reading


Government finally admits truth about Area 51 Watch

Image of A truck transports a mysterious, covered object to Area 51 under tight security.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Daily Mail has posted pictures of the mysterious fleet of planes that flies workers into Area 51. Area 51 is the secret Air Force facility that is rumored to house alien technology. The existence of the base was only recently acknowledged. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Sirach 3:17-18, 20, 28-29
17 My child, be gentle in carrying out your business, and you will be ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 68:4-5, 6-7, 10-11
4 Sing to God, play music to his name, build a road for the Rider of the ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 14:1, 7-14
1 Now it happened that on a Sabbath day he had gone to share a meal in ... Read More

Reading 2, Hebrews 12:18-19, 22-24
18 What you have come to is nothing known to the senses: not a blazing ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 28th, 2016 Image

St. Augustine of Hippo
August 28: St. Augustine of Hippo is the patron of brewers ... Read More