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July 3rd, 2009
08:07 AM ET

Honoring Those Who Have Sacrificed

As the U.S. gets ready to celebrate Independence Day, let’s not forget about the many people who have sacrificed for the U.S.

Those who currently serve in the military…

Those who have served in the military in the past…

Those who have sacrificed for the U.S. in some other way…

We’d like to honor each of you.

Please take a moment to share with us the story of someone who has helped bring Americans the freedoms they enjoy today.

Post by:
Filed under: Heidi Collins • Tony Harris
soundoff (17 Responses)
  1. michael armstrong sr.

    The warriors of past and presnt should honnor themselves and there friends they lost to keep our country free this is a day that self aknowledgment should be observed to themselves for the sacrifices we gave to serve our country Michael Armstrong U.S.S. Texas C.G.N. 1978-1980.

    July 3, 2009 at 9:43 am |
  2. ronald

    Honoring those whom have sacrificed for this nation,must never neglect mention of the American Indian tribes,whom in history logically sufffered the most of any demographic group of this land.
    If it were not for the American Indians, this nation may never have learned from its past faults.
    it is quite honorable to remember those whom have served in the military, lost their lives for the benefit of society here as well as around the world,yet we as Americans must always honor and admire the select few individuals whom have succeeded in time needing statesmen versus politicans too.
    It is very easy to find yourself in war, but it is far more difficult to find ourselves not entering a war as well.
    I have served in our military, i am honored to have served our nation, our society, but we as Americans on this special day of Independence must not ever forget our true beginnings as we walk the path of the future, we must never neglect the the needs of our veterans when they return home among us,as a nation is only as good as it treats its own.

    July 3, 2009 at 9:53 am |
  3. Kathryn

    Staff Sgt. Raymond Elijah Hatcher, Jr....
    born August 26, 1958....
    killed March 2, 1991...
    Desert Storm

    Some days it feels like he just left us and other days it feels like it was just a bad dream, and was a lifetime ago... it has been 18 years since we said goodbye and it is still not easy to be here without him... we all MISS HIM VERY MUCH... One day we will meet again...GOD BLESS TO ALL AND HAVE A SAFE AND WONDERFUL WEEKEND

    July 3, 2009 at 10:03 am |
  4. Jamie

    As an Army Wife, These holidays have such a greater meaning to me. My husband served in Iraq in support of OIF and during that tour we lost many good soliders. A few were very close to us so I would like to honor them here.. Also I just want to thank all the soldiers and their families for what they sacrifice every day for our country. God Bless you all.

    In Memory of:
    SGT Phillip R Anderson- KIA 3.10.08
    CPT Torre Mallard- KIA 3.10.08
    SPC Wesley Burkett- KIA 3.10.08

    RIP soldiers

    July 3, 2009 at 10:10 am |
  5. Kathryn

    People need to understand, when they are protesting against the war {like with desert storm} they should always support the men and women that are fighting the war... You can support your fellow AMERICANS and still have issues with the war itself... You may not believe in the reasons for the war but...
    "YOU MUST ALWAYS BELIEVE IN YOUR FELLOW AMERICANS"
    and IN YOURSELF!!
    Remember those that are fighting are following orders, so do not condemn a person for something they have no control over... AND if you disagree with something ask a person who does not and see their point of view you may feel differently... there are those that are fortunate enough not to have family members fighting overseas or lost someone... so we you disagree with something... listen to others and maybe they can help you to at least support....
    "THE TROOPS" and "GOD SPEED TO ALL"

    July 3, 2009 at 10:11 am |
  6. Mrs. Connie Sieman

    I want the world to know about my father who was a very proud man who consider it to be an Honor to serve his country. His name Tech Sargent Charles Kenneth Straughn. He served n the United States Air Force. He always said that there is nothing wrong for standing up for your country. He was in the Air Force for 20 years. We just lost our father on Feb.4,2008. All three of his children miss him very much.
    Remember those who have gave there lives for all of our freedom.

    July 3, 2009 at 10:20 am |
  7. David Cheeseman

    Neda. Her sacrifice wasn't just for Iran but also for the independence of humanity. I hope that free expression is preserved in Iran.

    July 3, 2009 at 10:24 am |
  8. krisann

    My fiance is over seas in Afghanistan now defending our freedom. He just turned 19 while over there and and joined the Marines as soon as he graduated high school. He is a combat engineer and would do anything to protect our country. The courage and pride he has makes me even prouder every day that passes. Our soldiers are our heroes without them our country wouldn't be what it is today. Freedom is a continuous struggle to maintain and our men have done nothing less than amaze me. God bless our soldiers, both past and present. I love you Matthew!

    July 3, 2009 at 10:34 am |
  9. don

    there is no time on CNN for vets that have served this country......or serving now................very important that service and unheralded...

    Its all about Michael Jackson at the expense of everything else..........day after day after day..............so much for the news on CNN

    this comment will never be posted, its too real!

    July 3, 2009 at 11:00 am |
  10. Ruby from Byron Georgia

    Hi Tony,

    Michael Jackson was a legend in his own time. "The Man in The Mirror" was beautiful in spirit and will long be remembered for many things. He will be remembered most for his unconditional love for mankind and his ability to join people of all colors and nations together through his unprecedented music, song and dance. He will live in our hearts forever.

    July 3, 2009 at 12:12 pm |
  11. anre

    Actually this is the first time that i read it and actually remember it beside sitting in class as young as i was not really caring for it. But thank you Tony and your team for posting this. Well done.

    July 3, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  12. Jennifer Astrup

    Let's hope we will not be subjected to Sarah Palin's rambling and monotonous dialogue in the future. She is not White House material and she should stick to her huntin' and fishin'.......

    July 6, 2009 at 9:29 am |
  13. CATHY BROWN

    WHAT DO I THINK ABOUT SARAH PALIN.

    SHE IS A VERY CONFUSED INDIVIDUAL WHO GOT EVEN MORE CONFUSED ONCE SHE WAS SELECTED FOR VP BY JOHN MCCAIN. I FEEL THERE IS AN INVESTIGATION COMING UP WHICH SHE DOES NOT WANT IN THE PUBLIC FORUM. TOO LATE, SARAH, YOUR LIFE IS AN OPEN BOOK.

    July 6, 2009 at 9:30 am |
  14. Ed Woodrick

    I recently viewed Tony's story regarding the US Marine who responded to a letter from a youngster in the US. The letter was from a young fellow who was having difficulties in the elementary classroom and refused to pick up a pencil in writing class. Utilizing a letter-to-the-troops writing program the young man initiated contact with a Marines who was able to 'communicate' back to the youngster in a meaningful way.
    In 1968 when I was in Vietnam I received precious letters from relatives. Additionally I also received numerous letters from young students in the US. I did not know these students and tried to take pencil in hand and answer each letter.
    I think of this story as sort of a '41 yeal old revers Salute The Troops'. Not sure if it should go to Robin as well!? I grew up in Ilion, NY which is a small town in central New York State. Perhaps a population of 10000 with one high school.
    After being in country for awhile I started receiving letters from a Kay Geer who had an Ilion, NY return address. This puzzled me be cause we typically at least knew the last name of most of our fellow students who are +/- 1-2 years our own age.
    Kay and her family left the Ilion are and relocated farther to the east outside Saratoga, NY where her father found work. Even though we are only one year apart in age (I'M SENIOR) and the same village doctor dilivered both of us we never knew each other in our youth. As with the ather letters I received I answered Kay's letters with pencil in hand (no internet in those days!).
    After being in country approximately nine months I received notice via the Red Cross that my mother had had a heart attack and I was requested to return home. [As you can imagine when out of country there are events that take a lifetime to fill in! I learned earlier this year that my mother actually died on the operating table but was resuscitated. I was not told whether or not she was still alive at the time I left the 1/92 Artillery in Vietnem.]
    My mother and Kay's mother worked different shifts at the Ilion hospital and were aquainted with one another. Kay's mother knew I was in Vietnam and asked for my address since Kay wrote to servicemen. And this closes one loop.
    While I was home on leave I had to contact this gal. I would have liked to contact all those who were so gratious to write to me. Unfortunately my mind wasn't prepaired for that–worry about my mother, still had 14 months active duty and only had emergency orders with no reassignment orders.
    I called her in August, 1968 and we chated at least an hour even though we never met. We went out several times while I was home and fell in love. Eventually my reassignment orders caught up with me and I spect the remainder of my three years at Fort Sill, OK. In December, 1968 we were enguaged and we married on Jylu 26, 1969. Our 40th anniversary is on the horizon!
    I salute all those who salute the troops especially those who take the personal time to write. Letters help!
    You can imagine why I am fond of telling people Kay and I met in Vietnam with no other background information to get their reaction. At a Memorial Day cerimony one response was "That must have been romantic!" My wife certainly thinks it is a very romantic story. God bless her she has been by my side for almost 40 years!
    By the way I just uploaded our picture on Facebook-including our black German Shepherd.

    July 6, 2009 at 1:44 pm |
  15. Natalie

    Hi Heidi i remember Michael Jackson when i was 8 years old.
    And i will remember Michael forever.

    Thankyou,

    Natalie

    July 7, 2009 at 9:48 am |
  16. Perry

    All soldiers that are fighting in the sand box. Those are the soldiers who makes us have a peaceful society. The misconception that many American have is the prenotion to believe that freedom is free. As a soldier who is currently serving, I can say that freedom isn't free. It won and fought through a barrel of a gun. Its paid for through the blood of my fellow battle buddies. So from a soldier to all the soldiers, I thank you. Soldiers have taking the oath to protect and defend the constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign or domestic. So all soldiers should be praised for they have answered a call that only 1% of the American population would do.... Army Strong....

    SPC RANDLE
    U.S. ARMY

    July 7, 2009 at 10:32 am |
  17. Darrell Gudmundson

    I think it was Mark Twain who wrote, "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance."
    In the same vein, "If you think healthcare is expensive, try illness."

    Allowing disease to fester among poorer families causes risks for everyone and can lead to epidemics.

    Illness costs businesses billions in lost productivity. During free trade negotiations with Canada, one of the worries was that government healthcare in Canada was an 'unfair' subsidy to businesses north of the border!

    Finally, people should realize that the current treatment of welfare and other cases in emergency rooms is ALREADY being paid for by tacking the cost onto everyone's regular hospital bills. Emergency room treatment is far more expensive than if people simply saw a doctor in the earlier stages of an illness or an infection.

    Stop and think. Do Americans REALLY think that Canadians and Europeans are stupid? Can they bring themselves to understand that millions of people see the value in lowered barriers to medical care; earlier treatment, and a generally healthier population?

    July 9, 2009 at 12:00 pm |

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