You rise
You fall
You’re down, then you rise again
What don’t kill ya make ya more strong

They are the freedom fighters, the oath keepers. They are not expendable, but are heroes nonetheless!


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They bleed red, white, and blue. Fighting multiple wars, they have left family and friends behind. They sacrifice their lives while we, all too often, are merely killing time.

What many of them have seen and experienced cannot be so easily undone. Wars and conflicts end, but their pain lives on……

Through black days
Through black nights
Through pitch black insides

May it never be said that their sacrifice was in vein. They’ve walked through the fire and have taken on the night. Their service is one of ultimate sacrifice.


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Their fate often left undecided, they are endangered souls on borrowed time.

Breaking your teeth on the hard life comin’
Show your scars
Cutting your feet on the hard earth runnin’
Show your scars
Breaking your life, broken, beat and scarred
But we die hard

Tragically, the chosen conflict does not always merit the risk nor the price. Our warriors are too precious to be offered up. May every battle of the past and in the years to come have a clear divide.

The dawn,
The death,
The fight to the final breath
What don’t kill ya make ya more strong

Regardless, there is never any shame in loyal and devoted service.

It is up to US to remain hyper-vigilant, keenly vested, and intensely engaged. Who are the men to whom we’ve handed over the controls? Do they represent our greater interests? And are they worthy of our men?

They scratch me
They scrape me
They cut and rape me

Their lives are on the line – our brave sons and daughters. How can we sleep as they live or die?

Spilling your blood in the hot sun’s glory

We die hard.

Thank you vets! Thank you, brave active duty men and women stationed all over the world!

All my fellow citizens who have loved ones who serve – thank you!

America Never Forgets! God Bless You!!!

We can never repay our debt. We are not worthy of your bravery and unwavering devotion to the righteous cause of liberty.

May we never forget those who have suffered wounds, injury, and chronic disability, whether mild or severe.

May we never forget those men who have bravely fought and have given their lives.

May we never forget the men who fought so valiantly defending Ambassador Stevens and the Benghazi Consulate. RIP Seals Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty – True American Heroes!!!

May we never forget the 30 heroic service members (many of Seal Team 6) who tragically died in the Taliban attack on a CH-47 Chinook helicopter in Afghanistan:

Lt. Cmdr. (SEAL) Jonas B. Kelsall, 32, of Shreveport, La.

Special Warfare Operator Master Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Louis J. Langlais, 44, of Santa Barbara, Calif.

Special Warfare Operator Senior Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Thomas A. Ratzlaff, 34, of Green Forest, Ark.

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician Senior Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Kraig M. Vickers 36, of Kokomo, Hawaii

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Brian R. Bill, 31, of Stamford, Conn.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) John W. Faas, 31, of Minneapolis, Minn.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Kevin A. Houston, 35, of West Hyannisport, Mass.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Matthew D. Mason, 37, of Kansas City, Mo.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Stephen M. Mills, 35, of Fort Worth, Texas

Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician Chief Petty Officer (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist/Diver) Nicholas H. Null, 30, of Washington, W.Va.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Robert J. Reeves, 32, of Shreveport, La.

Special Warfare Operator Chief Petty Officer (SEAL) Heath M. Robinson, 34, of Detroit, Mich.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Darrik C. Benson, 28, of Angwin, Calif.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL/Parachutist) Christopher G. Campbell, 36, of Jacksonville, N.C.

Information Systems Technician Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist/Freefall Parachutist) Jared W. Day, 28, of Taylorsville, Utah

Master-at-Arms Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) John Douangdara, 26, of South Sioux City, Neb.

Cryptologist Technician (Collection) Petty Officer 1st Class (Expeditionary Warfare Specialist) Michael J. Strange, 25, of Philadelphia, Pa.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL/Enlisted Surface Warfare Specialist) Jon T. Tumilson, 35, of Rockford, Iowa

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Aaron C. Vaughn, 30, of Stuart, Fla.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Jason R. Workman, 32, of Blanding, Utah

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 1st Class (SEAL) Jesse D. Pittman, 27, of Ukiah, Calif.

Special Warfare Operator Petty Officer 2nd Class (SEAL) Nicholas P. Spehar, 24, of Saint Paul, Minn.

Chief Warrant Officer David R. Carter, 47, of Centennial, Colo. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), Aurora, Colo.

Chief Warrant Officer Bryan J. Nichols, 31, of Hays, Kan. He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan.

Staff Sgt. Patrick D. Hamburger, 30, of Lincoln, Neb. He was assigned to the 2nd Battalion, 135th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), Grand Island, Neb.

Sgt. Alexander J. Bennett, 24, of Tacoma, Wash. He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan., and

Spc. Spencer C. Duncan, 21, of Olathe, Kan. He was assigned to the 7th Battalion, 158th Aviation Regiment (General Support Aviation Battalion), New Century, Kan.

The airmen killed were:

Tech. Sgt. John W. Brown, 33, of Tallahassee, Fla.

Staff Sgt. Andrew W. Harvell, 26, of Long Beach, Calif., and

Tech. Sgt. Daniel L. Zerbe, 28, of York, Pa.

* Words in italics by James Hetfield

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by WesternJournalism.com.


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