Thursday, May 25, 2006

Happy Memorial Day

Hey, everybody, have a happy and safe weekend, with lots of barbecues.

Kelly Malloy has a series of wonderful posts to remind me what the weekend really means.

To Lt. Ed Novak in the Undisclosed Location, I'm thinking of you, right now.

And okay, you caught me, Ed. I'm also thinking of bratwursts and Ommegang by the lake with you on the 4th of July. I think bourbon will also be involved, but I doubt the Wisconsin Sa.... Never mind. Oh, what the hell... Do they have salami in Iraq, or is that just a Wisconsin thing?

Inside joke, people, between Ed, a few Cooperstown types, and me. I promise, no more inside jokes, but it's about 115 degrees where Ed is, and he's all bundled up in camo, carrying a rifle, so I figure he can use a laugh, even if it is an inside joke.

And Ed, I'm also remembering being an usher in your wedding, and being Alexis's Godfather, and remembering the mornings you and I couldn't remember the night before... Even the low points were high points.

I should paraphrase the Boss... maybe mess around with his lyrics:

Drivin' in to Otsego County,
Me and Ed on the Fourth of July

Enough of that: We're all proud of you, Ed, but get your ass back here soon.

In the meantime, I'll remember that this isn't just a long weekend. There's a reason we call it Memorial Day.

Happy Memorial Day.


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Anonymous LT Ed Novak said...

Adam, Thanks for the thoughts. I’m really looking forward to putting down the rifle for a while and picking up my kids. I can’t wait for the bratwurst and Belgian Ale, but today I’m thinking of two things. My family back home, and a few friends who won’t be at any 4th of July picnic ever again.
I really miss my family. I know that my wife has it a lot rougher than I do, even though I’m the one in the combat zone. Over here I’ve got my band of brothers, a large extended family that’s sharing the same hardships and facing the same fears. Back home, my wife is alone. She has to do so much on her own, that I can’t even image how she does it all. I know I never could handle what she’s doing every day. I’m also so very thankful that she let me go, so I can be here, doing what I’m doing, with the greatest group of men I’ve ever known.
I’m also thinking of a few friends, that I’ve shared a few beers with, that won’t be home enjoying a fourth of July parade this year like I hope to be doing. The most recent friend that I lost, I met in training at Ft Leonard Wood two years ago. I got to know him a little bit over the four months we were in class together. Back in early January I recognized his picture in an issue of the Army Times, and I read that he had been killed on Dec 20th. I remember staring at the page for a little while, and saying a little prayer. He was a hell of a soccer player, a good man, a fine soldier, and a lot of fun to be around. Today I’m remembering Michael Cleary.
I’m also remembering another fallen comrade who I had the privilege of sharing experiences with in OCS at Camp Rowland, CT, and Ft Benning, GA. Today I also remember Mark Dooley, who was killed back in September, not all that far away from where I’m sitting now.

3:15 PM, May 29, 2006  
Blogger Jennifer said...

Thanks Adam and Ed both for bringing home what this past weekend really was all about. I haven't had a chance to email, Adam, because we were in Norwich. We woke the crew early, early to watch the canoe regatta starts on Monday morning and then try out the Harmony House Cafe for breakfast. Pure bliss....more soon!

10:19 PM, May 30, 2006  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Adam, thanks for reminding me of what war means to family. And, especially to you Ed, your comments brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for your story - you, your family and the families of your fallen comrades are very much in my prayers.

12:34 PM, June 03, 2006  

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