"I'm sorry I must leave, but I must do what is asked of me by my God, my Country, and my Corps.. and so, the war blog begins, again." ~B

16 August 2010

3 Years: Remembering Will

On August 16, 2007 Cpl. Willard M. Powell was wounded in action near Tarimiyah, Iraq after his unit was attacked. He succombed to his wounds and passed away in Balad.

Word traveled across the globe to the home of his mother, to his father, to his best friends, his friends, and to all those who knew him.

Will Powell, who had just weeks ago turned 21, was gone.

I made a promise to never forget Will and
that promise is something I take very seriously. Will was a good soldier. He was a better man. We cannot let his memory fade away.

I wrote a long post on this subject last year. You can read that here: Coming Together.

This year, I am just remembering his smile. His competitiveness. His sacrifice.

One thing that Will has taught me with his death is that each day is sacred. We must take it and use it for all that it is worth. We don't know how much time we have left on earth or how much time we have with those that we love. We must be present in the moment. We must love each other with all that we have. We must live life fully and faithfully.

Will did.

Will gave up his life so that we have the chance to do so in a free country, safe from the threat of harm.

Let us not waste it.

Will, you are loved. You are missed. You are not forgotten.

See you when I get there.

If you are able,
save them a place
inside of you
and save one backward glance
when you are leaving
for the places they can
no longer go.
Be not as
hamed to say
you loved them,
though you may
or may not have always.
Take what they have left
and what they have taught you
with their dying
and keep it with your own.
And in that time
when men decide and feel safe
to call the war insane,
take one moment to embrace
those gentle heroes
you left behind.

Major Michael Davis O'Donnell
1 January 1970
Dak To, Vietnam, KIA

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