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Monday, May 30, 2011

Gone Before . . .

This weekend as the ship entered port after nearly a month at sea I prepared to stand duty only to be relieved this morning and proceed to enjoy one of the best breakfasts in recent memory (you do not know good food until you’ve been at sea for a time without it!). It gave me time to think and be thankful. I have been consuming an amazing book during this last underway, having desired to read it for far too long, entitled "Last Stand of a Tin Can Sailor." In the midst of the types of operations we were conducting it was a surreal experience to think on this narrative. The story is about the Battle of Samar during World War II and the men who fought in it. Reflecting on the amazing heroism of the Sailors and Officers on those ships and in those aircraft on that day have stirred awe in my belly and tears in my eyes. So, I think of them and I pray today for those on land and sea that are doing the Nation's work as instruments of restoration and relief in the broken places of world. Consider for a moment if those men and women of another generation and of this one did not do what they did. Would you, would all of us, be able to enjoy our breakfast this morning in the same way? They did, and they continue to do, what they did so that we can continue to do what we do all the while too often taking it all for granted. For those who have stood the watch I rise up, stand at attention and salute in humble gratefulness.