by David Sisler

Today is Memorial Day, the day we honor those men and women who have given their lives in defense of our freedom.

Typically today, we celebrate by discounting washing machines 20 percent, advertising furniture for sale at half price, and broadcasting loud and obnoxious commercials to sell automobiles.

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War.

Two years ago in this space, I wrote, "The Americans who have died, guaranteeing our freedom, are not honored by the 'beginning of summer' sales." The cost which soldiers have paid to bring down Osama bin Laden and all of his terrorist ilk only amplify the shame of the crass commercialism that stands on the bodies of our honored dead.

Writing in The Weekly Standard, Jonathan V. Last lists the names of the men and women who have given their lives fighting terrorism. He says, "Our debt to them is to great to repay. But it is right that today we reflect on their names, and honor them in our hearts with prayers and gratitude."

Read their names. Honor their sacrifice.


Sgt. Andrew Russell


Cpl. Ainsworth Dyer

Pvt. Richard A. Green

Sgt. Marc Leger

Pvt. Nathan Smith


Lance Cpl. Brian Juul Andersen

Staff Sgt. Thomas Kruse Butzkowski

Lance Cpl. Kim Carlsen


First Sgt. Hachert

First Sgt. Rubel

The United States of America

Spc. Thomas F. Allison

Spc. Marc A. Anderson

Capt. Matthew W. Bancroft

Lance Cpl. Bryan P. Bertrand

Chief Petty Officer Matthew J. Bourgeois

Gunnery Sgt. Stephen L. Bryson

Spc. Curtis A. Carter

Tech. Sgt. John A. Chapman

Master Sgt. Nathan Ross Chapman

Staff Sgt. Walter F. Cohee III

Cpl. Matthew A. Commons

Staff Sgt. Brian T. Craig

Sgt. Bradley S. Crose

Senior Airman Jason D. Cunningham

Machinist's Mate Fireman Apprentice Bryant L. Davis

Master Sgt. Jefferson Donald Davis

Spc. Jason A. Disney

Staff Sgt. James P. Dorrity

Spc. Jonn J. Edmunds

Chief Warrant Officer Jody L. Egnor

Maj. Curtis D. Feistner

Sgt. Jeremy D. Foshee

Staff Sgt. Kerry W. Frith

Staff Sgt. Justin. J. Galewski

Staff Sgt. Scott N. Germosen

Chief Warrant Officer Stanley L. Harriman

Sgt. Nathan P. Hays

Maj. Stephen Long

Pvt. Giovanny Maria

Sgt. Jamie O. Maugans

Capt. Daniel G. McCollum

Master Sgt. William L. McDaniel II

Staff Sgt. Dwight J. Morgan

Capt. Bartt D. Owens

Sgt. 1st Class Daniel Henry Petithory

Staff Sgt. Brian Cody Prosser

Staff Sgt. Juan M. Ridout

Petty Officer 1st Class Neil C. Roberts

Sgt. 1st Class Daniel A. Romero

Staff Sgt. Bruce A. Rushforth, Jr.

Johnny "Mike" Spann

Pfc. Kristofor T. Stonesifer

Sgt. Philip J. Svitak

Sgt. Gene Arden Vance Jr.

Sgt. Jeannette L. Winters


Copyright 2002 by David Sisler. All Rights Reserved.

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