Friday, May 22, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend Tribute

On this special weekend, I want to express my gratitude to our fallen heroes who fought for our freedom. It is a precious gift that we must treasure, respect, defend, and pass on to future generations.
(Photo at right is Don Amador at 60th Anniversary of D-Day Wreath above Omaha Beach)

In 2004, my wife planned a surprise trip for my 50th birthday. She and my oldest son, Jonathan, took me to the 60th Anniversary of D-Day in Normandy, France. As the son of a WW2 veteran (Patton’s 3rd Army), I have a deep respect for those who serve and for those who had made the ultimate sacrifice.

I will someday write more about that 2 bus tour that retraced the steps of Allied Forces from the beaches of Normandy up through Bastone. But for today, I will simply say that visiting the grave sites of those soldiers killed in the landing at Normandy was a life changing experience for me. It deepened my respect for those who have served and sacrificed in all wars and that I should live my life to honor those deeds.

I must share one particularly moving story that was told me by a veteran of the 82nd Airborne who landed on D-Day. I saw this man sitting under a tree with two women that looked like his daughters. When I walked up to him and asked him if he could tell me his story… he said, “After I parachuted in, I was by myself armed with a Thompson and as I walked around a corner in a small town I came face to face with about 8-12 Germans. After lifting up the barrel of my Thompson and pulling the trigger… the next thing I remember was that I woke up some time later and they were all dead and I was alive.”

Strange thing was that his daughters were standing some distance off from us talking with my wife, but they overheard his story and told my wife that he had never told that recount to them. The challenge for me is to honor that sacrifice by the way I live. I fear that often I fail to meet that goal. However, we all should continue to try.

Again, my deepest appreciation to those who made the ultimate sacrifice and to the families left behind. My appreciation also goes out to those who have served and continue to serve. God Bless.

I wanted to share a couple of songs with you on this Memorial Day Weekend.


Spiritual “You are Not Forgotten” - this song is a tribute to our troops


Rock “If I Die Tomorrow” - this song is a tribute to troops


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