When United States Marine Corps 2nd Lt. James Cathey’s body arrived at the Reno, Nevada Airport in 2005, Marines climbed into the cargo hold of the plane and draped the American flag over his casket….as passengers watched the family and the Marine Honor Guard gather on the tarmac.
See the people in the windows? They sat right there in the plane, watching those Marines. You gotta wonder what’s going through their minds, knowing that they’re on the plane that brought him home. They will remember being on that plane for the rest of their lives. They’re going to remember bringing that Marine home. And they should. — MAJ Steve Beck, USMC
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Yes, this picture is almost a decade old. But little has really changed. American servicemen and servicewomen still go in harm’s way each and every day around the world.
And, with the potential of a third world war looking like an increasing possibility…as aggression, extremism and weak leadership inflict chaos, suffering, instability and evil around the planet….scenes like this may become, unfortunately, all too frequent again soon.
Every time I see this photo, I am viscerally reminded of just how lucky I’ve been in life….how grateful I am for my country of birth….how proud I am to be an American….and how much respect I have for those young men and women who continue to go, voluntarily, in harm’s way to protect our way of life.
»Photo: Photographer Todd Heisler of the Rocky Mountain News (at the time….now employed at The New York Times) won the Pulitzer Prize for Feature Photography in 2006 for his photojournalistic work on the funerals for United States Marines returning home from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. This photo also won him First Place in the highly-respected Picture of the Year International, sponsored by the prestigious University of Missouri School of Journalism and the Picture of the Year International Endowment.
»CLICK the photo for a closer view of this powerful and thought-provoking image….