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Sgt. William Stacey's Farewell Letter


Strider

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As another 4th of July approaches and We, the People get ready to celebrate our country's birthday, I couldn't help but think about Sgt. William Stacey's last letter to his family. This is the letter that every serviceman writes but hopes it never has to be delivered; for this is the letter that comes with the news to your family that you have been killed.

Sgt. Stacey was killed earlier this year in Afghanistan. He was only 23 and already on his 5th tour of duty. He lived in Seattle and the Seattle Times recently published his letter, with the permission of Stacey's family. Here is his letter in full:

"My death did not change the world; it may be tough for you to justify its meaning at all. But there is a greater meaning to it. Perhaps I did not change the world. Perhaps there is still injustice in the world. But there will be a child who will live because men left the security they enjoyed in their home country to come to his. And this child will learn in the new schools that have been built. He will walk his streets not worried about whether or not his leader’s henchmen are going to come and kidnap him. He will grow into a fine man who will pursue every opportunity his heart could desire. He will have the gift of freedom, which I have enjoyed for so long. If my life buys the safety of a child who will one day change this world, then I know that it was all worth it. 'Semper Fidelis' means always faithful. Always faithful to God, Country and Corps. Always faithful to the principles and beliefs that guided me into the service. And on that day in October when I placed my hand on a bible and swore to defend the constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic, I meant it.”

I am not trying to depress anyone, bring you down, or start any argument pro or con. I'm just asking that the next time you hear the politicians and media pundits bicker and posture and pontificate about war, remember that it is the Sgt. William Stacey's of the world that actually have to do the fighting.

http://articles.latimes.com/2012/jul/01/local/la-me-william-stacey-20120701

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To the Honourable tlie President and House of Convention.

Gentlemen, The vote of this day appointing me governor of the commonwealth, has been notified to me in the most polite and obliging manner, by George Mason, Henry Lee, Dudley Digges, John Blair, and Bartholomew Dandridge, esquires.

A sense of the high and unmerited honor conferred upon me by the convention, fills my heart with gratitude, which I trust my whole life will manifest. I take this earliest opportunity to express my thanks, which I wish to convey to you, gentlemen, in the strongest terms of acknowledgment.

When I reflect that the tyranny of the British king and parliament hath kindled a formidable war, now raging throughout this wide-extended continent, and in the operations of which this commonwealth must bear so great a part ; and that, from the events of this war the lasting happiness or misery of a great proportion of the human species will finally result ; that in order to preserve this commonwealth from anarchy, and its attendant ruin, and to give vigour to our councils, and effect to all our measures, government hath been necessarily assumed, and new modelled ; that it is exposed to numberless hazards, and perils, in its infantine state ; that it can never attain to maturity, or ripen into firmness, unless it is guarded by an affectionate assiduity, and managed by great abilities ; I lament my want of talents ; I feel my mind filled with anxiety and uneasiness, to find myself so unequal to the duties of that important office, to which I am called by the favor of my fellow citizens at this truly critical conjuncture. The errors of my conduct shall be atoned for, so far as I am able, by unwearied endeavours to secure the freedom and happiness of our common country.

I shall enter upon the duties of my office, when ever you, gentlemen, shall be pleased to direct ; relying upon the known wisdom and virtue of your honorable house to supply my defects, and to give permanency and success to that system of government which you have formed, and which is so wisely calculated to secure equal liberty, and advance human happiness.

I have the honor to be, gentlemen, Your most obedient and very humble servant,

P. HENRY, JUN.

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As another 4th of July approaches and We, the People get ready to celebrate our country's birthday, I couldn't help but think about Sgt. William Stacey's last letter to his family. This is the letter that every serviceman writes but hopes it never has to be delivered; for this is the letter that comes with the news to your family that you have been killed.

Sgt. Stacey was killed earlier this year in Afghanistan. He was only 23 and already on his 5th tour of duty. He lived in Seattle and the Seattle Times recently published his letter, with the permission of Stacey's family. Here is his letter in full:

"My death did not change the world; it may be tough for you to justify its meaning at all. But there is a greater meaning to it. Perhaps I did not change the world. Perhaps there is still injustice in the world. But there will be a child who will live because men left the security they enjoyed in their home country to come to his. And this child will learn in the new schools that have been built. He will walk his streets not worried about whether or not his leader’s henchmen are going to come and kidnap him. He will grow into a fine man who will pursue every opportunity his heart could desire. He will have the gift of freedom, which I have enjoyed for so long. If my life buys the safety of a child who will one day change this world, then I know that it was all worth it. 'Semper Fidelis' means always faithful. Always faithful to God, Country and Corps. Always faithful to the principles and beliefs that guided me into the service. And on that day in October when I placed my hand on a bible and swore to defend the constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic, I meant it.”

I am not trying to depress anyone, bring you down, or start any argument pro or con. I'm just asking that the next time you hear the politicians and media pundits bicker and posture and pontificate about war, remember that it is the Sgt. William Stacey's of the world that actually have to do the fighting.

http://articles.lati...stacey-20120701

Amen.

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Gentlemen, thank you for posting those thoughtful and awe inspiring letters. Those words have parallel emotions that should be remembered on this nation's birthday. Thank you.

Happy birthday America!

God bless Sgt. Stacey and Mr. Henry.

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