A Gift Called Freedom

One of the privileges I have had as Military Spouse of the Year was attending a tea at the White House.  While being in the White House itself was a gift, it was the people whom I met inside that made an impact on my life. As I roamed from room to room, looking at artifacts from our Nation’s history, it was a woman standing in one of the rooms that grabbed my eye. The woman wore a pin that had the photo of a Marine. As I got closer, I realized it was a memorial pin, he was her fallen son.

On that day, I only got to speak to Ms. Janice Chance for moments. I could not find the words that could do her loss justice, but I did walk away with the thought of her story embedded in my mind.  When I got home I researched her son’s story.  I learned that Captain Jesse Melton was a man of strong conviction, strong in his faith, his family, and his service to country.  Captain Melton left on his tour to Afghanistan having a bad feeling of what would happen to him. On September 9, 2008, Captain Melton lost his life.

All across our country, loved ones are left behind as a casualty of war; yet it is their response to their loss that shows the uniqueness of the military family. They do not hide their pride, but rather they carry on their service member’s story. As Americans, as supporters of our brave military, we can best honor these heroes by learning their stories, sharing their stories, and continuing to live our lives in a way that proves their sacrifice was not in vain. Be grateful every day for this gift called freedom; we are the few, the proud who get to wake up every day in a country that allows us to pursue our own hopes & dreams.

Freedom is never free, never forget our fallen.  To learn more about Captain Jesse Melton, you can read his story at: http://www.jessemelton.net

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