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Friday, August 7, 2009

Fallen Children

I wasn't going to blog about this, but it's been a long week here in my little rural community. We've all been upset. We are a small community of just over 3000 people; we all know each other. And our hearts are breaking. A few months ago, our local National Guard Unit was sent to Iraq and then Afghanistan. I know lots of communities have seen their units off to do service in the Mideast. Our unit is a small unit filled with boys and girls from the surrounding communities. The National Guard was created to protect our borders, it was never met to be deploy our seas. At least, that was always my belief.

But news reached our community early this week that one of our boys lost their life in Afghanistan. He was a boy, not even a man yet. He graduated with my son, Kris, just last year in 2008. He was actually a few days younger than Kris. I know his mother, I see her in the grocery store, and I always ask how Garrick is, what is plans are. Kris and Gerrick went to cub scouts and boy scouts together. Played on the same ball teams together. Attended classes together. I'm sorry but this is very hard to get my head around. When I first heard, I thought it had to be a mistake, Gerrick's this huge, healthy kid. How could anything have happened to him?

I've been trying not to think about it all week, but today I have to go to the Sullivan High School where his memorial is being held. I've been trying not to cry all week. My eyes have been burning with tears that I've been trying not to shed. I was one of his boy scout leaders, I cannot not go to his memorial. But, I keep wanting to scream that it just not right, not fair. He just graduated High School for Heaven's sake, he hasn't had a chance to live yet. Why?

I pray everyday that Iraq and Afghanistan will resolve and our boys will be brought home. Gerrick is not the only boy I know currently in the Mideast. I dread that others will be lost as well. Please bring them home, Iraq was a wasted war and Afghans don't want us there either. It's not that I don't support the boys and girls serving, because I do, I honor them for their service. It's just time for us to stop asking them to give their lives for a battle that will never be finished.

I just needed a place to vent and to get this out of my head. It doesn't matter if no one reads this, that's okay. I wanted to talk to someone about it, but every time I try, I want to cry instead. I have felt horrible all week, and now I feel a little better. Not much, but a little. Thinking about it has been so draining, I feel worn out and tired. But at least I've been able to let some of it out. Now I have to go see Gerrick's mother and try not to cry some more; this time I know I will be unable to succeed.

16 comments:

Amanda J. said...

That's terrible and I'm sorry for your community and especially the boy's family.

I know it's hard and that sometimes we feel we need to be strong and not cry; but there are times when tears are needed, and I personally feel that shedding tears over a lost soul is one of those times.

My thoughts are with all of you.

MsMoonlight (Elizabeth Jules Mason) said...

I am sorry for your loss Dottie, its so sad to hear of anyone dying - especially a young person with so much of life ahead of them.
War is a tragedy and the loss of life is tragic. But I can't say that I see these soldiers as "boys or girls"- because of what they do and because of my military family. I know they are young in years, but they make adult decisions to join the military - especially in times of war knowing what is being asked of them (to put their lives on the line).
When they make that decision and make it out of basic training I think they deserve to be called men and women regardless of their ages. But like I said, I've got military in my family (generations of military) and its how I was raised to view all our soldiers so I guess I am a bit biased that way. As for the National Guard going over seas, my father was NG and he went to Viet Nam - this is nothing new with NG going overseas today- though it wasn't its original intent it was an option if necessary.
I hope all this ends soon and all our soldiers can return home to their loved ones.

MsM

booklover1335 said...

Hi Dottie,
I am so glad you shared this story with us. My heart goes out to you, his mother & family, and your community for your loss. You're right to lose someone that young is so very wrong.

Men in the military seem to be a fav type of read for me and they are always romanticized in books, but something like this really brings home the reality of life in the military and all that our men and women serving our country risk each and every day.

My thoughts are with you as you attend the memorial service today.

Michelle G said...

Dottie,

My thoughts and prayers are with you and the young mans family as well as all of those that serve our country and the families that love and support them. :)

Hugs,
M

VampFanGirl said...

I'm so sorry for your loss and my thoughts and prayers are with you and your community Dottie.

(((GIANT HUGS))) VampFanGirl

Sheila (bookjourney) said...

I am so sorry for the loss to you and your community. This is heart breaking.

Chris said...

*hug*

Donna (Fantasy Dreamer) said...

Oh, Dottie, this is such a sad situation. I wish I could give you a hug and a shoulder to cry it out on.

My thoughts and well wishes are with everyone suffering through tragedies brought on by this war.

Take care,
Donna

Linda Ellen said...

=( *hug*

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Thanks everyone for stopping by and sharing your thoughts and feelings with me. Thanks for your support, it was greatly appreciated.

Dottie

Houston A.W. Knight said...

Oh Dottie... (((warm heartfelt hugs)))

I'm crying with you as I write this...my heart is broken...I know how you feel...I really do.

When I lived overseas, the Viet Nam war was going on...I live right down from the army base hospital and I'd go to visit our wounded men often, and give my support.

But there is one "boy" I will never forget (I was thirteen at the time, he didn't look more than 3 years older than me) I wondered how he was able to get into the army; being that young! I wondered about his parents...and why they'd let him go.

A chopper came in with wounded ... straight from Nam. The choppers did this all day long.
When this one landed, just feet away from me, I was looking right at this "Boy", he was one they'd set on the outside of the chopper - I looked at his red hair, freckled face and bright blue eyes -he was smiling and I saw him wink at my sister.

Then my glance fell to his body as the Medic's removed a domb cover that had been placed over him...he was naked...his entire body had been burned....

I looked back into his bright blue eyes and smiled back at him...my heart was breaking, I wanted to scream "what have they done to you?" I wanted to hold him and make him right again...but I couldn't...so I smiled back.
I pray to this day he remembers that smile...I pray he felt the love I'd sent him for his brave sacrifice...he'd given his life and he was so young, too young for such a scarifice...and he'd done it for me, and those like me...what made me (us) that deserving?

I cry for him to this very day...A mixture of guilt, anger and sadness and a pure LOVE. It hurts me that I was never able to find out if he lived...I pray he did, and I pray he found true love...

But I can tell you in that very moment...THIS BOY HAD BECOME MY HERO. A true hero and a man my soul will always be indebted to. I can't forget him nor do I want to. He was a boy in body, but a man is soul.
He was and is my hero...who allowed me to feel "LOVE in it's purest form" if only for that moment in time.

I feel the same for your fallen child...a hero of all our hearts. And I pray the Gods make no more Hero's...we have enough.

Love
Hawk

Lea said...

((((Dottie)))))

My heart goes out to you, your community and that poor family... I am so very sorry for your loss and sorry I missed this post.

What a heartbreaking situation. My thoughts are with you all.

Warmest Regards
L

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Hawk, thanks for stopping by and sharing your story. My uncle was at Vietnam and never fully recovered. Anyone that was there to bring comfort while he was at the hospital is greatly appreciated. He lost his battle with his demons a few years ago.

Several parents I've met over the years, were also at Vietnam, all still suffer the effects.

War of any kind is horrible, I wish it would all stop.

Thanks for coming by,

Dottie

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Thanks Lea, when I went to the memorial, Gerrick's mother tried to comfort me. It was one of the worst things I've had to do. I hope this violence ends soon.

Dottie

Teddyree said...

Oh Dottie, I was so saddened to read your post, what a heartbreaking time. I'll be thinking about you, the young man's family and your little community over the coming weeks, everyone will need a great deal of support and tlc.
I hope this terrible war comes to an end soon

My Blog 2.0 (Dottie) said...

Hi Teddyree

Thanks for coming by, it has been a hard time for all of us, but mostly Gerrick's mother.

This war is a horrible war with horrible consequences. Hopefully, it will be over soon, I don't think I could deal with another young life lost.

Dottie

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