This I Believe

William - Elliottsburg, Pennsylvania
Entered on May 8, 2007
Age Group: 50 - 65
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I believe in the human drama. With each beat of my heart comes the mystical, omnipotence of life.

Each day births a vibrancy; nameable and bundled with curiosity.

And so, on this day as sunlight wields its April temperament across Perry County, the hills and fields succumb easily to the burgeoning warmth. Perhaps in this seasonal loam lies rectitude or some immutable sense of beginning that will not bellow to sorrow.

As the Iraqi war continues to manacle communities to sadness and uncertainty there was a brief, poignant moment for me along a road in Landisburg, Pa. A young Marine named Jason Frye was killed in the war. I can only imagine of the remarkable strength and zeal that this young man had for his country and his community. But more, he has forever cast himself with those Marines of perpetuity whose singularity of bravery like the heavens themselves is boundless.

His funeral procession wended its way to the cemetery. Along the road people stood in front of their homes, some on the shoulder; holding flags, banners and the weight of their grief. Elsewhere, small flags lined the route like colorful sutures holding a bereaved County together.

My youngest son, Justin, himself a Marine combat veteran of the Iraqi war stood alongside me as we waited for the procession. Meanwhile, an older gentleman pulled up alondside us and asked if he could join us. He explained to us that he too was a Marine veteran of the Vietnam war here to pay respect to a ‘fallen brother’.

Momentarily the procession appeared above a knoll. As it approached, the older Marine turned and stood straight as an arrow, he saluted as the body of Lcpl Jason Lee Frye went by. It was a captivating revelation of beauty, sorrow and tribute to the dignity of a life spent in the service of others.