I posted this in 2013. The words are what are on my mind today.
I'm not a veteran. I never served in the armed forces, so I only have a glimpse of what they face.
I've been away from home, had things happen I had no control over, and suffered with worry until I was home in a relatively short period of time. It was nothing like what our armed forces face, when they're thousands of miles from home, everything turns to crap and they have to keep on doing what they're doing, in spite of the fact they've lost family, or their house burned down, or their spouse moved on....the list goes on forever.
When you add all the adversities life presents - and death - those that served were removed from all they loved, cherished, hoped for and were anticipating. They left this earth, while the problems continued and their family, and friends, were left with only memories; embellished by a loss that's too deep to express.
The loss of a loved one is never something to be taken lightly. The loss of a member of our armed forces accentuates the dangers the world presents and society can only observe the damage, without any real method to repair the damage. Those left behind only have fragments of their former life. They scrape up the pieces and try to put it together again.
Honor those that left while serving this great nation. It's a tiny thing to do, when compared to their sacrifice.