"People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." Eric Blair (George Orwell)
On Tuesday, a co-worker of my husband's was killed. He was not in the same group as my husband. In fact, I do not think my husband ever met him, but he was on the same business trip.
Today, I attended his memorial service. As always, it was tough and terrible and necessary. I will tell you that there was not a woman there who wasn't imagining what it would be like to sit through the service for her own husband, and not a one of us who didn't think "there, but for the grace of God..."
His eulogists quoted George Orwell (above) and Psalm 144 (you can look it up).
This is what I learned about him. He was young--twenty-three--and had only been married a year. His wife is in nursing school, so she stayed back in the States. They last saw each other in July, when he went home on vacation, and they celebrated their one-year anniversary. They never lived together.
He had a tattoo on his back that said "Real Men Love Jesus." He sometimes got the giggles so badly during times when he was supposed to be serious that he would fall over laughing. Literally fall over. His parents are both pastors.
I wish I could remember more.
I do remember this. (I always remember this.) At the end of the service, they called his name out loud three times the way they always do. And three times no one answered.