How do Rangers spend their Memorial Day? Probably in much the way you think we do. And much the way veterans across the country do to honor their brothers and sisters and those countless many who have given everything throughout our history.
Do I mean we sit around and stare at a slideshow of our brothers who will never hug their children again. Never enjoy the company of their friends and family again? Never get to live out their lives as we all do? No. Because that isn’t what they would have wanted or how they would want to be remembered.
In the city where I live, there is a large contingent of former Rangers who regularly get together and rack up some impressive bar tabs while being reminded of what an awesome group of men we were privileged enough to spend the best times of our lives with. And with every raise of the glass, we remind ourselves of those of us who are not there to share in the debauchery they were present for just years ago, as well as those before them.
I am very lucky to have a community such as that already in place here, as I hope many of you do, as well. But this is how we remember our buddies who can’t be barbequing with their family or enjoying the company of those they care about. Because the men we know who have died, and undoubtedly those that came long before us, would beat the dogshit out of us for not celebrating their lives in the most Ranger way possible.
So on this Memorial Day, we are getting together as we usually do. As will Rangers across the country. And it will start with a few barbeques, a few beers. The usual. Then we will all begin streaming into our designated rally point. A few pitchers will be handed out, followed by cheers to those of us that were carried off the objective by their brothers. Never to stand on their own again. In this war, and wars past. Immortalized in the memory of the survivors and all of us.
Then a few more pitchers will get passed around. And the reminiscing will begin, mostly full of ridiculous stories of unmatched insanity outside of the community. Then some genius will stroll back from the bar with a big dumb smile and a tray of shots. And that will inevitably be the last thing we remember for the night. What happens after that is probably best left where it occurred.
But what no one will forget during all of this, is why we are there together. To pay a tribute to those who gave up everything, so that we may continue to enjoy our lives. That is what they gave their lives for. So that we could have ours. And that is something to celebrate. That we are part of a group of men that would do that for each other. And we celebrate to remember them and what they did for the rest of us. Because you had better believe they are all drunk off their asses in Valhalla, and have been since they got there via Valkyrie insertion.
We celebrate like this so they may continue to be there for the memories we make in their honor. We celebrate like this because, to us, they aren’t really gone. They never were. They were always right there with us, where they belong. In the ranks of men they loved so much, and who love them. More than brothers, more than any words can construe. Never to be truly understood by those that never were.
As we will all fade into distant memory. They will never be allowed to pass into history by those who follow us. They will survive long past all of us. On this Memorial Day, we continue to honor them by remembering their lives and what they have given us by sacrificing everything for those they love. They are the Airborne Rangers In The Sky. Forever on overwatch for their brother Rangers.
– Sua Sponte