These guys just don’t stop despite intense heat and sun beating down on them all day, blisters the size of this great state of Texas we’re marching through, and the pain of the 50-pound ruck sacks weighing them down. It truly is awe-inspiring and brings me to tears quite a bit when I think about their sacrifice and their huge hearts. They tell me that no amount of pain makes up for the emotional pain of the families of the 17 fallen Airmen we’ve lost. And although we are only honoring the special tactics Airmen with the batons the men are carrying, I know that these guys would go to any lengths to honor all of our Air Force family who have fallen.
I’ve learned a few things since I arrived to Air Force Special Operations Command. It’s never about us, it’s about them. What I mean is that these guys never do anything for themselves, they do it for their Air Force, Army, Navy and Marine brethren they are protecting or saving. They do it for their comrades. They do it for their families. And they do it for their country. I believe that these men all retain a unique quality of never giving up. No job is too tough, no mission too hard to get through, and there is no life not worth saving.
I know I keep going back to my Dad in these posts, but he truly was my hero. He was a Marine and he truly embodied what it means to be a Marine…the sharp uniform, the command presence, the impeccable military bearing, the brute strength, and the heart that never quits loving or defending our country. Our special tactics Airmen are no different. Our Navy Seals are no different. And our Green Berets are no different. These are the men who will always give all to save lives and protect others.
I know you probably feel like you need to put patriotic music to this blog right now, but I can’t help it. If you were to come out here and see the men marching, sweating, bleeding, aching, all in remembrance of their fallen comrades and especially those they left behind, it would inspire the heck out of you too!
From the woman who shook one our men’s hands and then drove off crying, to the little kid on crutches who kept up with the men as long as he could, they understand what these guys are doing and they understand the importance of self-sacrifice for others.