Friday, October 30, 2009

Honoring an American Serviceman

Today I was privileged to witness the burial ceremony of a friend of mine's son. Brian, had recently passed away while serving as a junior NCO (Non-Commissioned Officer) in the United States Air Force.

While he did not die while in harm's way, he died while serving this country and for that I gladly honor him. His family is understandably saddened at their loss and our hearts, Martha's and mine, go out to them in this time of grief.

The ceremony, with full military honors, took place a little past Noon today. It was at the Fort Logan National Cemetery in Denver. The snow covered fields with their seemingly endless rows of white marble headstones provided a sobering and peaceful background as the shots from the honor guard rang out three times. To the Honor Guard and Casket Detail I say, job well done Air Force!

There were four representatives from the Patriot Riders as well, standing the Colors proudly and quietly, my thanks to you as well for your support of a fellow veteran and his family.

The day turned out beautifully warm with the sun out in strength and temperatures feeling like they were in their 50s. I was glad it was so, it seemed fitting to lay this young man to his rest on a beautiful Colorado day. I'm thankful that the Fort Logan people were able to reschedule this ceremony due to the frightfully cold weather we've endured the last two days.

I leave you with the above shots of snowclad fields of our country's best. I think Patton had the right idea when he said: ""It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived." I read this on Brian's facebook memorial page below and while I am not saying it is foolish and wrong, for grief and mourning are the family's right. I am saying that Patton was right in that we should celebrate the lives of such who give their all for their country.

Brian James Joiner
Staff Sergeant, United States Air Force
1985 - 2009
Rest in Peace

From Brian's father, my friend Steve:

Staff Sergeant Brian J. Joiner, USAF age 24, was born April 5, 1985 to Judy and Stephen Joiner in New Milford, CT. He moved to Parker, CO in 1991 with his family, where he graduated from Chaparral High School in 2003. He joined the Air Force two weeks after graduating as he was deeply affected by 9/11 to serve his country. He was stationed in England, Afghanistan, Romania and other bases throughout these United States. He was active military, stationed at Nellis AFB in Las Vegas, NV where he died on October 21, 2009.


Arizona Harley Dude said...

Heartfelt condolences to Staff Sergeant Brian J. Joiner's parents, family, and friends.

Thank you Sir, may you rest in peace as we who honor your calling and sacrifice grieve. It is because of proud, brave men and women like you, Sir, that I am proud to be an American.

chessie said...

God bless...this blog post is just right. You've honored the young man well.

Jack Riepe said...

Dear Charlie6 (Dom):

No parent should ever have to bury their children. My heart goes out to Brian Joiner's parents, family, and friends. I deeply regrest their loss, and the loss to the community and country.

Jack Riepe