Goodnight Soldier

Our Veteran Has Gone

His battle is over.

His war has ended.

And now he’s gone.

One more soldier.

One more old man.

One more willing to sacrifice.

And now he’s gone.

He has gone where roses bloom.

Goodnight Soldier

I have never earned the right to salute.

But I can cry.

And I am.

Goodnight Soldier.

Goodnight sweet man.

Our Veteran

51 thoughts on “Goodnight Soldier

  1. In the words of Abraham Lincoln for what it’s worth, “I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost…” My hopes are that your fond memories warm your heart through all your days, and I personally appreciate your words and thoughts you’ve posted above. Wonderful tribute!

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    • AnotherWarriorPoet, thank you kindly for these soft words. They are appreciated. And I am glad that they resonated with you personally, it means a lot that you share that with me. Thank you for your service. And for sharing time with ‘my/our’ veteran here.

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  2. This is so beautiful and yet so very sad. There aren’t many WWII soldiers still alive (if any). When my dad passed away, the soldiers that play the trumpets/bugles at funerals for the WWII soldiers when they pass away, were there and it was so very beautiful and very sad. I heard that when these people pass away then there will be no one to play for the funerals anymore. I’m so thankful that my dad was able to have them at his funeral because it was beautiful.

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  3. What a lovely tribute Colleen. The 4 WWII veterans in my family are gone now, but never, ever forgotten. One never talked about his experiences, but I heard about some of them from my mom. So horrible. We have 1 veteran living in my building, Navy, who didn’t come directly home after the end of the Pacific war, but was with Adm. Byrd on the trip to Antarctica to map the South Pole. A sweet old curmudgeon, still peeved about that, and in bad health, and peeved about that also. He has outlived his family, so we have become his family now. And when he is gone, we will miss him desperately. RIP to your Veteran, Colleen, my prayers are with you in your time of loss.

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    • I’ve met veteran’s like your beloved “curmudgeon” Angie. And met many who would not discuss the war either. Some have told me they see no need. Some have told me they just couldn’t speak of it. Some who wouldn’t say a word. And others who talk about it freely. Thank you for your kind words. And if you get a chance. Thank your Neighbor Now Family for his service. Some, many of us, still think of him and those he served with.

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      • Colleen, I thank every Veteran, and every person I see in Uniform now for their service to our country. My one Uncle who would never talk about his experiences to us was a gunnery sergeant who had 3 units shot out around him, leaving him the only survivor. Being one of the oldest in the cousin group, I know this, while his own kids don’t. I am so torn about whether to tell them about this or not. I think they should know, but the elders in the family have never told them, so I wonder if I should be the one. I’m not even sure if the rest of the cousins in my age group know this, because my mom is the only one who ever shared her memories with me. And I will definitely tell my “curmudgeon” there are people who still remember, and thank him for his service. And thank you Colleen. He will appreciate hearing that.

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  4. I salute Our Veteran, your veteran. Your loss is a heavy one, MBC. He saw so much and lived a full life, and took you in his embrace every time you visited. Thank you, up there, sir, for your service to us down here. This tribute and your wonderful words of 2013 say so much, my friend. Well done then, and now. Many condolences.

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    • Thank you MBM. He was so surprised that so many reached out to him back then. He kept saying “by golly” and “by darn” “they do remember”. I filled an album with comments emailed and left as comments and sent and given to me in cards for him. He was so touched. Ever grateful for the kindnesses of the people of the world. While he continued to produce them as well.

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    • I keep telling myself he is not suffering Julie. I go back to the post I wrote and look at his face in one picture, after the war where he’s at dinner….the shock in his eyes…. and I tell myself that young man is at peace now. Because I don’t think that shock ever fully gave him peace here.

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  5. Now I get it… I feel great sorrow. My Mustang club and I were just at Chino Planes of Fame today. I was talking with the docent about our vets, too… How sad. I hope he gets a burial with full military honors regardless… He will get on in my heart.

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  6. Colleen, so sorry for your Veteran’s passing. He was much loved by many, you helped to let him know this, too. I respect the way you drew this.This is perfectly expressed. I loved this post.
    I don’t know why you cannot salute him, I have met military (and married two military men, both Air Force) who said it is okay to be low-key and casual, by saluting Vets, it is an ‘honor’ to them.

    Anyway, I believe in veterans and thank them for their service, honor the ones who have been injured by giving to various causes, but may offend you by saying that I wish we could pull back some of our troops, where we are not making progress, helping to cut back the costs of tending the world, hoping to take care of our own country, here.
    My thoughts are with you and your very good man.

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    • Robin I was always raised with an understanding that only active military and/or veterans had the “right” to salute. Of course, technically, I ‘can’ salute. However I’ve always believed that is an honor reserved for active or retired military. I could be wrong. But until a few thousand military personnel convince me otherwise…..I’ll put my hand over my heart. And cry. And I know that many many service personnel, upon learning of this man’s passing would salute him for me….for us. Because he earned it. Not because I asked (I didn’t want to sound possessive there.)

      I’m not offended by your opinion Robin. 🙂 I support our veterans and service men and women as well. There is nothing wrong with taking care of US and helping the world. How we do it…..that’s the tricky part.

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    • Thank you Debra. We were all, I believe, a bit shocked. Despite his age we all expected him to bounce back. He always did. Always did.

      Thank you for spending time with him. He would have been so grateful.

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