As I drove into Fort Sam Houston this past May, I had hoped to capture the endless rows of white headstones. I wanted the photo to show that the rows kept reaching farther than the eye can see. It appeared the only way to achieve that was to have a high vantage point which I did not. A bit frustrated, I sat down in the grass next to the stones thinking of the best way to photograph the scene before me and do it justice. I began to read the names etched into the rock all around me. Then I noticed the date they took their first breath on this earth to the date of their last breath etched in stone as well. I pictured their life as a husband, father, son or as a brother. Who loved them? Who waited for them to come home? Who still cries for them even today? In the distances I could see cars pull up and park. A lady and a little girl got out and walked among the stones stopping in front of THE STONE that marked the final resting place of their loved one. I watched as the child moved about while the lady stood motionless facing the grave. I tried to imagine where her thoughts took her. She then laid some fresh flowers down...taking one last look before holding her childs hand and turning to walk back into her life outside the gates of this bittersweet place. Then an older man and woman exited another vehicle. Slowly walking to the stone that called to them. Upon reaching their familiar stone, the woman bent down to brush away some dead leaves that had gathered about and pulled a few blades of grass that had over-grown a bit. Then she carefully placed new flowers next to the stone of white. They stood in silence staring down as they leaned against each other. I thought who had they laid before them, perhaps their son? How do you do that? I could hardly take in just the thought of that pain. I looked yet again in another direction only to see a middle aged lady help an elderly woman out of the car. She walked with a cane to her designated stone. The stone that marked her loved one she buried years ago. I imagined it was perhaps her husband or maybe her son. The people I saw this day grieved my soul. I can't wish you all a Happy Memorial Day. I don't really feel like enjoying a hotdog and cold beer today. I honestly don't know how these people get out of bed each day. I guess at some point we all find the will to carry on. I look to the day they will see them again in heaven. What rejoicing there will be! For today, I will honor them by remembering to not remain silent politically so that our country might return to being "One Nation Under God". 2Chronicles 7:14, "If my people will humble themselves and pray...I will hear from heaven...and HEAL THEIR LAND."
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