'We serve proudly'

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By The Staff

Jimmy and Patty Lawrence of Cedar Key received this letter from their son, Sgt. Jamie Lawrence, an MP in the U.S. Army serving in Iraq.

Hey Pop.

Sounds like you guys are having a real nice weekend. Unfortunately, we did not realize it was even Memorial Day until after we returned from a mission and we went to eat dinner at the chow hall after being out all day.

At first we were wondering what all the commotion and extra decorations were for, then I saw a big sign saying, "remember the fallen soldiers" and that kind of thing. That's when we realized it was Memorial Day.

I kinda stared at the sign for a minute; and as the sign said, I remembered the fallen I have known. It didn't happen voluntarily, it just happened. It happened quickly, almost in a flash, but they were all there. The hair on my arms and neck raised up, and a real hollow empty feeling swept over me.

I'm not sure what that was all about. But at least I know I'm able to still remember, even though it hurts deep in that place inside I try to keep them all buried.

So to you and all you know, it is my personal honor to serve. Through pain, sacrifice, and strife. We serve proudly.

With friends made, friends lost, and friends remembered. We serve proudly.

Through the good times, the great memories, and the horrible memories. We serve proudly.

When a husband's wife says she loves him and she's proud of him, there's no greater reward. When a son's father says he loves him and he's proud of him, there is no greater reward. When a son's mother says she loves him, and sheds a tear for his safety, there is no greater reward.

A soldier goes through a lot when in a situation like mine. But myself, and all the soldiers I serve with, feel the worth of everything we do, when someone whom we may or may not even know takes the time to say, "Thank you, we're proud of you."

It makes the world of difference to us.

Pop, have a great weekend, save some cranberries for me, and maybe a few pieces of that turkey skin. I love you guys. I'll talk to you soon. Just mere days now until I get to go back to Germany. Tell Brad, LeAnn and the gang hello and I love them too. Mom, just for you and big hug and kiss. I love you.

Your son