Frank J. Montoya


In memory of… the Doughboys
Who went “Over There” to fight.
They ate and slept in a muddy trench;
They suffered shot and shell and poison gas.
They lie now, silently, beneath Cross or Star,
In lonely fields, across the sea, so far.

In memory of… the GI Joes,
Who throughout the world did proudly serve,
In that second “War to end all Wars”.
The hundreds of thousands who bravely died
To preserve our precious way of life:
To save the world from pain and strife.

In memory of… those neglected souls,
Who in Korea waged “The Forgotten War.”
They faced Siberian cold and scorching heat,
And a ferocious foe in a relentless land.
Can we forget the Battle of Pork Chop Hill,
And the more than 8000 that are missing still?

In memory of… those who went, in doubt,
To fight a most unpopular and thankless war.
As they died their peers maligned their deeds;
Their cause decried abroad and here at home.
No regard for the thousands that would sadly fall,
Names engraved on that cold Vietnam Memorial Wall.

In memory of… those who died in Desert Storm;
Who were lost “keeping peace” in a foreign land.
Who died bringing Freedom to the people of Iraq,
And who fell seeking terrorists in Afghanistan.

In memory of… those still standing with us here tonight
Who survived the brutal, fierce and bloody fight,
And those who suffered wounds in body or in mind,
And those poor souls that were, sadly, left behind.

We must protect our precious Liberty – come what may.
Whether hot or cold… wars call for sacrifice.
The cost of Freedom has been extremely high,
But our sons and daughters have paid the price.

Let us hold them all… forever close, in memory,
For they have shown that Freedom Is Not Free.

Author’s Note: May 30, 2005 – Once again it’s Memorial Day. Once again we will have parades, music and speeches. Every day there are more dear departed souls to memorialize. It seems that Americans are always paying the price in the effort to export our concept of Freedom and Liberty to the rest of the world.

We can only hope that those efforts have not been in vain.