October 23rd – Not Just Another Day

In this fish bowl, with the world watching, these young men–warriors by trade–were asked to be ambassadors; to fly the flag, be a “presence,” promote peace in a region that historically has defied it.

And they were doing the job; they were being effective. Cease fires were in place and peace talks were under way; shop owners in Beirut were opening for business, people were walking the streets, children were smiling again. But this stability did not suit the purposes of rogue nations and their proxies, thus the attacks were deemed necessary.

These young men, who came from towns and cities like those served by PRB, were doing the best they knew how under all-but-impossible conditions; and they were succeeding.

They demonstrated conduct and wisdom far beyond their years and their discipline under intense artillery, rocket and small arms fire was beyond impressive. They gave hope where hope was a distant memory.

They were victims of their own success.

So, Weekenders, as you make your plans for next week, please make a note on Oct. 23 to stop a moment and give thanks for the loved ones you have in your life; because in Jacksonville, N.C., tears will be shed once again for loved ones who never came back from Beirut.

Randy Gaddo, a retired Marine who also served for 15 years in municipal parks and recreation, is now a full-time photojournalist who lives in Beaufort, S.C.; he can be reached at (678) 350-8642 or email cwo4usmc@comcast.net.

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One comment on “October 23rd – Not Just Another Day

  1. Richard Heaton on said:

    Thanks for reminding us that we cannot, and should not, forget! And thank you, Randy, for your service.

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