Tag Archive | sadness

Remembering Landon’s Daddy


Today I saw this picture and brief note on Facebook. I have to say it stopped me in my tracks and I feel compelled to speak about it:

 “Meet Landon. His father, Marine LCPL Carpenter, gave his life defending our country in Afghanistan

earlier this year, a month before his son was born.  Baby Landon’s Mom wants his story to be known.

Take a moment to share this photo with your friends and reflect on the price of freedom.

 Never forget the price of freedom.”

I don’t know Landon or his parents but I know the sadness that this image creates. As an American I am saddened by the memory of what started us down a path of war. The senseless killing of so many, many innocent people on that solemn day in 2001 has changed the world and a generation.

I am also deeply saddened by the loss of life that has commenced throughout the wars – both Iraq and Afghanistan. And frankly in a myriad of other places in the world where it might not be our men and women but people we don’t know. Families have suddenly lost fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, husbands, wives, lovers and friends. I don’t condone the war – it makes my heart hurt to think about it. But I do support the troops. And their families. They fight so I don’t have to and I am eternally, and without words to explain, grateful.

I pray that this little child has the blessing of a strong man in his life to show him the way to manhood. I pray that his mother can find peace and solace in the arms of family. I pray that we never, ever forget the sacrifice his father made.

And I pray for us, as a society, to find a way to live without the need or desire to kill for the love of politics, religion, land, money, greed or power.

We cannot bring Landon’s daddy home but we can change this world through love, acceptance, and peace.

… If only we would.


Good-bye Icons


There’s a sadness in the world this summer. There are so many celebrity deaths that everywhere I go I hear people talking about them. It seems we always hear of famous people dying in sets of 3. That seems to be the way we categorize it and the way we are aware of it. There seems to be something extra sad about this summer though – multiple sets of 3 in very close timing. Big names – really big names like Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson, Walter Kronkite. These are the names of my childhood. These are the iconic people I remember watching and admiring for their talent at the top of their game. I related to them in some way, or looked at them as the ultimate “possibility”. Their names are lingering in the air. Their talent still shining in our collective consciousness.

What is it about losing icons that makes such an intense universal impact? Why are we still talking and hearing and reading about them? It’s not like we knew these people intimately. We may think we knew all about them but all we knew was what someone else wrote or assumed or the little glimpse of them showing their talent. We don’t really know them at all! They weren’t family. They weren’t friends. They weren’t even acquaintances. What are they really? Role models – maybe some. Idols – likely yes to many. But it has to be more than those superficial connections that keep us hanging on to them. I wonder why it’s so difficult for us to say rest in peace and let them go.

For me, it’s hard to think of someone close to my age being gone. Someone who’s face I recognize at a mere glimpse and who’s voice I know by heart. It’s like a part of my childhood is “poof” … gone. It’s a certain reminder of my own mortality. And it makes me wonder at the level of impact I’ve had. Have I done enough? Am I just coasting through life with my small circle of influence? Do I even have a legacy that people will remember? Maybe that’s part of the impact. Losing people from the face of the earth that have clearly impacted so many makes us wonder about our own impact. I have work to do. I have people to love, encourage, teach, learn from, and inspire.

So, for now I say to Ed, Farrah, Michael, Billy, Walter and all the others. Go swiftly into the embrace of God. Rest in Him! We will remember you as we carry on!