Saturday, April 23, 2011

Why My Mother Cried.....

As I have written before, my family would make a trip to the Cemetery of the Pacific on Memorial Day.  There was much talk of those who had fallen -- during World War II, Korea and later Vietnam.

We would walk through the headstones and we would read the inscriptions.  In those days, it was not uncommon to see family members at the headstones.

One year, we came across Ernie Pyle's headstone.  When I looked at my Mother, it was just in time to see her stop a tear.  I asked her why the tear.  She told me that Ernie Pyle had painted the pictures of World War II for her and others who were waiting at home for friends and family to return.  Ernie Pyle was their source of information, their source of understanding.  War journalists affect our lives whether or not we know their names.

On April 20, 2011, I finally understood her sadness when the deaths of photojournalists Chris Hondros and Tim Hetherington were reported.  These two men had painted the pictures of so many modern day conflicts for me.  Chris and Tim were both 41 years old - Ernie was 45 --- all had their lives cut short sending the story of war home to us.  All three were killed while covering war.  All three were killed in April.  All three gave the world insight into something most of us can not comprehend.  These were remarkable men.  We are better for having had them here -- a bright light has gone out at their passing.

But, there are more bright lights out there - more who will send back the stories and images of our world.  We are fortunate to have lived and to continue to live in the world with them.


Kanani said...

Sad. Tim and Ernie were only 4 years apart in age.
Both died too young, but left enormous legacies.

Coffeypot said...

I almost met Tim. Judy and I were invited to attend the viewing of Restrepo at Ft. Benning. I met Kanani and Leta Caruth there, but Tim’s plane was late getting into Atlanta and couldn’t get to the theater on time. So I was surprised how much his death affected me. Gut shot for sure. But his loss is no less important and sad than any other person we have lost since Adam and Eve. He was just more well known. Like Ernie, there is a huge gap in the journalist community with the loss of these two awesome men. Hugs to you, too.

Laura Evangeline said...


Amy Proctor said...

Many blessings, brother.