Loss, War

The Best Way to Memorialize the Dead…

…is to tell their stories.

That’s what I’ve tried to do, over the years, with my family members–father, mother, husband, stepson Sam, stepson Mike, friend Colleen, Mr. Right’s first wife, and many others I’ve lost over the years.  Some of them certainly didn’t start out as natural allies.  But they ended up as beloved friends.

Because, when it comes right down to it,  the story of all these dear people isn’t about me.

It’s about them.

And the only way I can insure that the world remembers them is by telling their stories–ones they can no longer speak to on their own.

It’s a matter I addressed in my post, “Uniquely Human Memories” (first published on Ricochet in 2019) in which I talk about the uniquely human ability to project the memory of the dead–through our recollections of them–onto others, thereby bringing them back to life, even for those who didn’t know them.  It’s a connection that no other form of animal life can accomplish.  And it’s very special, and often restorative and insightful for all.

The thirty-second anniversary of the death of one of those mentioned in that post is fast approaching.

The best thing that the best friend of this young man (who perished in enemy fire at the age of 25) could do is tell “forgotten Marine” 1stLt Rob Paz’s story and bring him to life for us.

Because, although I know some of this young man’s story, as it was relayed to me a few years ago, it’s not a story that’s mine to tell.

Over to you, dear friend. Have at it.

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