Dead Men Walking
By Jonesobo 100, Editor-At-Large
Of all the photos I took in Washington, I think this one has moved my spirit the most.
What you are looking at is the reflection of the statues from the Korean War Memorial reflecting off the wall of the names of all the men and women who were killed in the Korean Conflict.
Unseen in this photo, is the Vietnam War Memorial, known as “The Wall” which is almost adjacent to this memorial across the Reflecting Pool on the Mall.
It is fitting that these two war memorials are adjacent to each other, separated in time as represented by the Reflecting Pool, and also that the Vietnam War was the next war that we fought.
As I viewed this scene, I thought of the spirits of the Korean dead talking to the spirits of the Vietnam dead. I can’t imagine what that conversation would sound like, but the first thoughts that came into my mind was the movie series “Band of Brothers”.
I was the right age, at the right time to have fought in Vietnam, but I never did. I didn’t volunteer and I was never drafted. I never dodged the draft, and I suppose the one thing that kept me from being drafted was my marriage right out of college in 1963. President Kennedy changed the draft status of young married men in 1964, from A to 1A.
I had many friends who did go, some never came home, and some who did will never be the same. To paraphrase Tertullian, the father of Latin Christianity- The blood of the soldiers is the seed of democracy.
It is my hope and prayer that I can be worthy of their sacrifice!
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