Monday, May 30, 2005

Memorial Day

Today we remember with honor those men - mostly - and women who gave their lives to defend our freedom. Freedom of speech and the press are preserved by men in uniform, not by cynical journalists and civil libertarians. Frank Schaefer's book Faith of Our Sons: Voices from the American Homefront -- The Wartime Diary of a Marine's Father is very appropriate today. Schaefer raised his son in a comfortable Boston suburb where kids go to top colleges. Schaefer was stunned when his son decided to become a Marine. Available at Amazon From Publisher's Weekly:
In this follow-up to Keeping Faith: A Father-Son Story About Love and the United States Marine Corps (2002), which Schaeffer coauthored with his son, Corporal John Schaeffer, Frank and his wife confront the reality of their son's deployment to Iraq in February 2003. Although the third sentence of this "Diary of Deployment" is "I'm elated for my boy because he sounds happy," the fourth is "I'm elated in the same way one is 'elated' by looking over a cliff." Over the ensuing months, Frank and Genie work to calm their nerves, get and share information from and with other parents, and help parents whose children are killed in battle cope with their losses—some of whose letters are included here, as are letters from John, who returns to his U.S. base safely in December. Schaeffer is unflinching in recounting day-to-day dreams, fears and coping mechanisms, and in registering his own, and others', reactions to the politics of the war. Although most parents of soldiers don't write Op-Eds for the Washington Post or appear on Oprah, Schaeffer is careful to try to give voice to "ordinary" parents and soldiers from all branches of the service, and that care is what makes this volume a valuable resource for other parents of military personal. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Via Laura Ingraham