Side by side they stood on that bright October afternoon. They talked quietly. Remembering. Sometimes with tears.
These two pastors, one black and one white, moved slowly down the walkway of the Vietnam Memorial.
In their memories they transported back to a time when they were each just kids. Kids who were thrown into the ugliness of a conflict that would mark their lives. It was a time when when they fought with M-16s and grenades rather than the "Sword of the Spirit."
Before we arrived at The Wall that afternoon, our little group of five or six had been walking, talking, telling stories and laughing. All from Yuma, we took advantage of some free time before we gathered on the National Mall to pray with men from around the country. Something changed when we stopped there to remember.
The silence was palpable.
These two vets each found the names of men they knew. They stayed close to each other as they located those names forever etched. They obviously thought of the horror they had seen. They grieved over the comrades they wouldn't see again in this life.
I'll never forget the sight.
On this Veterans Day, thank you! Thank you, Johnny Mac, Patti and Josh (all on our staff) for serving. Thank you Russ and Shawn and Kelly and Ox and Binky and Chris and Redhead and Tal and Rob. It's a privilege to know each of you I want you to know how grateful I am that you served our nation.
Thank you to all in our Stone Ridge family who, either now or in the past, don a uniform and place yourself in the line of fire so that we can be free.
Thank you, spouses and family members who endure the hardship of long separations, challenging days and lonely nights. Your loved ones who serve always tell me that YOU are the real heroes.
The USA has its problems. It's far from perfect. But our freedom has always come at a price. It's a price you help pay.