Though I was too young, I had an older brother and two cousins who went to Vietnam during the war. My brother Chris made it back from the war. My two cousins, both Marines, did not.
Earlier today my wife and I visited a Vietnam War memorial that was set up this week at a local park in Simi Valley. It’s a ½ scale replica of the memorial in Washington D.C.
We were able to locate the names of my two cousins, both killed in action during the Vietnam War.
My cousin Michael Quigley (actually James Michael Quigley, after my Uncle Jim) was killed on May 9, 1967. Because I was much younger than him my memories are only through the stories of family.
I have a few memories of my other cousin Pat, although he too was several years older than me. Pat Murphy was killed on May 10, 1969. Both men were Marines. Pat’s father, my Uncle Pinky, also served in the Marines during WWII. Uncle Pinky is still around; he’s 92 years old. He and his bride of about 68(?) years, my Aunt Peg, are my heroes. I am very fortunate to have some very wonderful people as models/mentors in my life.
This post is a humble act of gratitude for my cousins and all the many men and women who have died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. For all those Heroes, who gave so much throughout the history of our country, I want to express my heartfelt thanks!
“One would hope that at least among the most important side effects of a knowledge of history or appreciation of history is a capacity for gratitude, our gratitude for all that has been done for us.”
– David McCullough