I believe this week is the hardest to get through of any in the year. In 2005, Travis was wounded in Hit, Iraq, by and IED device, and died of those wounds on the 21st. During this week, every year, I mourn the fact that no one from his family was there with him. I mourn the fact he died on foreign soil without his family around him. I am saddened that he never saw his youngest daughter, Emma, who, from what I gather by pictures I find here and there on the internet, is growing up to be a beautiful young woman. Of course, Hunter is a handsome young man. Tristan, his young son in the Phillipines, looks so much like him it is unbelievable. I am so very sad that he did not get to know this beautiful young man.
This week brings into focus all that Travis wanted to be, all that he was, and all he will never get the chance to be on this earth. I comfort myself thinking he was surrounded by those who cared for him during his final time here, and I believe they were caring and compassionate.
I never even knew he was wounded. I had moved, so casualty officers did not know where I was. Those who did know did not share the information with me. Would there have been anything I could have done to save my son? The answer is most likely no, but the "what ifs" can be very cruel and persistent.
There are still young men and women being killed everyday in these places, and I do not understand why. Was not the reason we went to Afghanistan in the first place to find Osama Bin Laden? And is he not dead? Did we ever find weapons of mass destruction? Did we not kill Saddam Hussein? Do our military personnel still need to be in these places? Perhaps we are there to instill the wish for freedom. However, ultimately, it is up to the people who live there to find there own way to freedom, if that is their wish. The Afghanistan people fought the Soviets and did all right for themselves.
Let us bring our young people home. They are needed here, by their families, by the ones who love and miss them.