Ian P Weikel
West Point, 1997
Be Thou At Peace
Posted by john schwartz on April 21, 2006:
While we are grateful that our family and friends have returned home from the War, we are always mindful that some who defend us will be escorted home by a fellow warrior. Our tears and tributes provide momentary solace but are essentially not equal to the task of comforting the loved ones of the fallen. The Captain's family must take comfort in knowing that a grateful but reticent Nation values his sacrifice and your loss. While we mourn his death , we should also rejoice that such men have lived. We must all aspire to live as they did. Lincoln knew the price of such sacrifice and expressed his gratitude and respect in a letter to Mrs. Bixby , a mother who had lost her sons in the Civil War: " I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusettes, that you are a mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine which would attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering to you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost , and the solemn pride that must be yours , to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of Freedom."----------The inequity we see in everyday life raises vexing questions about our God and our faith. In heaven , CPT Weikel now has his answers. The rest of us must wait , in hope , for ours. Peace be with all of you who loved him. With love and esteem, John Schwartz
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