2007: We pause for this Memorial Day to join in this refrain to those who gave their all to us so freedom we'd retain.
We pause for this Memorial Day to join in this refrain to those who gave their all to us so freedom we'd retain. For darkness they confronted in preserving freedom's light, we owe them more than we can pay for giving more than life. But lives they gave endure today in hearts and souls and minds of we who drink from freedom's cup the fruits of freedom's vine.
Additionally, for this Memorial Weekend, it's fitting to recognize the heroism and wisdom of Maj. Jeffrey Philip Toczylowski, a soldier who died in combat in November, 2005, but before doing so, left a message to speak to his countrymen after his death. Here's what I've written about his message (for the text, scroll-down past the pictures below):
Maj. Jeffrey Philip Toczylowski "Jeff Toz" (Pre-Promotion-To-Major Image)
That Third of November in Two-Thousand-Five
A Soldier named Jeffrey Tozylowski did Die
while selflessly serving that Freedom survive.
A Bronze Star arose from his Body that died,
but more than a Star from his Death did arise:
He left us a Posthumous Heart that Survives.
As "Toz" he was known by his Fam'ly and Friends
and Soldiers as one on whom all could depend
as one who ahead of himself would put them
whenever they needed on him to depend.
Though they know the meaning of "Posthumous Heart,"
it's fitting that others be told of his Heart.
On learning that one of such "others" perceived
the "Posthumous Heart" that by Toz was bequeathed,
his sister, named "Pam," to such one who conceived
the term expressed thanks for such sentiments weaved
in order that others could therefore perceive
what's meant by the "Posthumous Heart" he bequeathed.
When "Toz" chose the Duty of Risking his All,
he knew if the Angel of Death for him called
his Fam'ly and Friends and his Buddies would all
be helped if to them he could speak through his Pall,
and so, 'twas to them that from Death he would call
to tell them that Proudly he'd given his All.
The ways that he gave them this comfort in grief
were, first, before Death he made clear his belief
that "right" he was doing that others be free
and said, "If I die, no regret would I feel
except that no more could I serve in the Field,
and so I've arranged an event for the weal
for me Friends and Fam'ly and Comrades should feel."
"Instead of a Wake full of sadness and grief
a Party I've scheduled that mem'ries of me
with joy and affection be fondly retrieved
with comfort in knowing I died for Beliefs
familiar to Soldiers-- That 'Freedom's Not Free'--
and thus bought for others a chance to be Free."
The paraphrased quoting of Jeffrey is done
that justice to words he selected be done
in stating their gist as these stanzas are done,
but words can't do justice to deeds that he'd done
before he departed, so JeffToz DOT com is where those who'd Honor his Mem'ry should come.
What started this effort to justly describe
his deeds and his message for countrymen's eyes
were knowing his Hope to enable those eyes
to see what he saw in the mind of his eyes
and knowing the Message he left for our eyes
deserves being answered with earnest replies:
Though you weren't a soldier in-person we'd known,
you stood with the best of the soldiers we've known.
Our posthumous thanks by tradition are given
to Soldiers for Lives that for Freedom they've Given,
but You spoke to us through what Death would enshroud
to posthumously say of your country you're proud.
Your thinking of others has comforted hearts
for leading their lives when from you they're apart.
You've thus earned a place that's unique in our hearts:
A Hero who's left us a Posthumous Heart.
And so we must strive to be worthy "in deed"
of Gifts that from You through your Death we Received.
The "everyman" Private named "Ryan" perceived
such insights returning to Normandy's beach
by posing a question whose asking does teach
the answer to "What do we owe the Deceased?"
Asked "Ryan," "Please tell me the life that I weave
does Honor the Gift that from You I Received."
Jim is a proud descendant of 18th Century criminal exiles from England who swam to the Outer Banks when the British ship taking them to a Georgia penal colony sank in a storm near Cape Hatteras. Having the prescience to prevent their descendants from becoming "TarHeels," they immediately migrated to Virginia, where, within just a few generations they worked their way up into poverty. Jim's grandfather was the first in the family tree to see the distant horizons, but his career was cut short by severe injuries he sustained when a cousin cut down the tree.
After a brief stint in the Amry (ours) following graduation from law school, he began his legal career in the state bureaucracy but was never able to break into the federal bureaucracy. Several years later, he entered the private practice of law and co-founded a small law publishing company. Later, finding the publishing of small laws unstimulating and finding his private practice too private to be lucrative, he began writing political satire/commentary. His greatest vice is taking himself too seriously.
Although he regularly teaches Continuing Legal Education courses to lawyers, he's too-often available through he Rubber Chicken Speakers Bureau to speak on politics, satire, etc., at luncheons, dinners, root canals, funerals, etc. His speaking fees are so outrageously high they border on criminal price-gouging, but as a free-market advocate, he defends his fees on the higher moral ground of charging whatever the traffic will bear. For more information (surely more than one would want or need), go to www.PoliSat.Com.