When my son, Michael, left for Iraq, America was united in our determination to defeat the terrorists. We all supported the mission. Sadly, some Americans - fueled by a steady diet of media negativism - seem to have lost our resolve. Michael died on January 24, 2005 fighting for a cause he believed in. I know for a fact that he believed the cause was honorable because he told me so when he wrote a personal credo that explained, "I want to carve out a niche for myself in the history books. I want to be remembered for the things I accomplished. I sometimes dream of being a soldier in a war. In this war I am helping to liberate people from oppression. In the end there is a big parade and a monument to immortalize us in stone. Other times I envision being a man you see out of the corner of your eye, dressed in black fatigues, entering a building full of terrorists. After everything is completed I slip out the back only to repeat this the next time that I am called. I might not be remembered in that scenario, but I will have helped people."
The mainstream media may have lost faith in the mission, but I haven't forgotten that Michael - who's friends called him Shrek - died to "liberate people from oppression."
I am hopeful that the media will use Iraqi Liberation Day on April 9th to remember all of the good things Michael and our troops have done in Iraq.
I believe that if enough of us join together and speak out we can make sure that our servicemen and women abroad today know just how much we support them and their mission. Please visit http://ga3.org/ct/4pSC78p19X53/ and forward this letter to your friends; April 9th is just around the corner, so please act now.
Merrilee Carlson, Shrek's Mom
Gold Star Mother and Chair of Minnesota Families United
St. Paul, Minnesota