LETTER TO THE EDITOR: They go not unnoticed
U.S. Servicemen are still dying in combat every day in Afghanistan. But with the exception of a 10-second news-bite on the evening national news ... their names often go unnoticed.
Their names are often unknown to the listener and their unit designation means little to those who hear it.
And these losses are never real people to the TV listeners. Just another anonymous soldier losing his life ... just another young man forever taken from his family ... just another son who will be missed forever by his parents.
But we of the Fort Walton Beach community all too often feel this loss. For these two young soldiers who Wednesday gave their lives in the service of their country in Afghanistan ... lived here. They were our neighbors, our friends, our community.
These two soldiers were both assigned to the US Army’s 7th Special Forces Group, assigned to a little-known unit whose base is deep in the forest of the giant Eglin reservation.
They, like the literally dozens of fellow troopers assigned to that famous unit who too have given their last full measure of service to their nation, go unknown, except to the folks who live here in this community.
They, like the USAF Special Operations Command flyers stationed at Hurlburt Field, just a few miles away, who have also given their lives to defend their country in this same conflict, are just two more names added to the long list of servicemen that we have lost in our community to this war in the Middle East.
But they, like their comrades who have gone before them , do not go unnoticed in this town. For this is their town, our town, and we recognize their ultimate sacrifice.. We honor their service and we stand in silence at the edge of the road as they pass by ... one final time. And we will miss them.
God bless you, we will not forget.
Alan Hassell, Colonel USAF ( ret.), Shalimar