how dare we…

In celebration of Veteran’s Day and in honor and memory of soldiers who have given their service to our country, our community pays tribute in various ways. Last Friday our town had our annual parade honoring these heroes. Here are a few pictures from our local newspaper, the Williamson Herald:

veterans day parade band

veterans day parade sign

veterans day parade

This afternoon, on Veteran’s Day, my husband and I attended a showing of the movie Honor Flight at our downtown theater. It told the story of how a community in Wisconsin was able to send hundreds of veterans to view the World War II memorial in Washington, DC.

The movie was beautiful for many reasons, and highlighted so many things that we as Americans have to be thankful for – the dedication of these service men and women, the way their actions literally saved our world, the lives that those who survived have lived, the families and legacies they have created, the sacrifice of those who gave the ultimate gift, and the dedication of today’s volunteers who are determined to include all veterans in this honor before it is too late.

There is so little we truly understand of that time. We cannot comprehend the trembling state the world lived in, the worldwide fighting, the devastation, the deaths. We have little knowledge of the sense of duty and patriotism these men and women displayed. We cannot fathom their constant feeling of day to day fear, all the while serving and fighting and marching and trying to keep themselves alive. And yet some being willing to die to keep their fellow soldiers alive.

We wonder how it was that those who did survive came home, went on with what was before, started new lives and families, and kept so much of their experience somewhere deep inside: not sharing, but somehow remaining unbroken by it all.

At that time few of those soldiers realized what a profound difference each one of their lives was making on the world at that time, and on the future lives of all Americans. They didn’t have a sense of it then, but we do today, we should, and we must thank them and let them know how special they are.

We were moved by the personal stories of several men portrayed in the film. We were uplifted by the ways that they were honored through this gift of recognition and honor. We were challenged by one of the last lines spoken. The man who organized this effort asked us to ponder, as we learn about and reflect on the sacrifices of these heroes, “How dare we live trivial lives?”

Today, I am thankful. And I am challenged to live with purpose because of this great gift given to me  – my freedom – by these heroes who have lived such meaningful lives.

How dare we live trivial lives, indeed.

12 thoughts on “how dare we…

  1. Linda Baie says:

    What a quote “how dare we live trivial lives.” And how wonderful of your community to celebrate and show your gratitude for those who served. I have many in my family who served in WWII, and my father was killed when I was two, a pilot flying to protect us in the Philippines. My stepfather served all over the world in the Army Corps of Engineers-two special men in my life. Thank you for your wonderful post.

  2. Thank you for sharing this. Freedom always has a cost and is worthy of remembrance.

  3. Dana Murphy says:

    This is a really beautiful post. I will share it next Veteran’s Day with our students, if you don’t mind.
    I met a young Veteran at our school celebration whose story I have not stopped thinking about since. You are right – how could I not live with purpose after hearing his sacrifice?

    I especially loved your line “they didn’t have a sense of it then, but we do today”. THAT is the reason we celebrate Veteran’s Day. I’ll remember your words.

    • Thank you for your kind words. Of course you may share. You might also like to see this fine movie yourself – you can learn more about it by clicking the link in the post. Thank you again.

  4. neenslewy says:

    A great lesson to gain from our Remembrance.

  5. newtreemom says:

    A great quote, and a great story. Thanks for sharing and reminding!

  6. Two years and finishing strong... says:

    Thank you for writing such an honorable tribute….my dad was one of those in WW2 wounded inside and out. He never talked about it at all and even had trouble when we asked, but the flag always waved out showing his allegiance to his friends with whom he served and of course for our great country. I’m sorry for your loss…may we always remember and celebrate their lives. xo

  7. Tara Smith says:

    A lovely, lovely post. It’s so important to remember our service men and women, and their daily sacrifice for all of us.

  8. Leigh Anne says:

    Wonderful tribute. I love our school celebration of Veteran’s Day. No matter how much we teach, do or show our kids, I don’t think they will ever comprehend what it is like for a soldier. All we can do is continue to honor!

  9. Thank for this story. My mom’s Uncle was killed in the second world war. I will try and watch the movie, and I will remember the quote, “How dare we live trivial lives.”

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