Thursday, November 17, 2011

Remembering Nick Manoukian

A few years ago, I first told you about the story of A young Marine from Michigan, who lost his life in the Anbar province of Iraq. His name was Nicholas Manoukian, and he was 22 years old when he died. Since then, I have posted about this dedicated young man several times, particularly on Veteran's Day. You see, I promised this young man's mother that I wouldn't forget her son, and that I wouldn't allow others to forget him, either. Nicholas Manoukian is one of over four thousand Americans and untold hundreds of thousands of Iraqis who have been killed in Iraq since the U.S. invasion, of that country, and now that President Obama has said that all American troops should be out of that shattered country by the end of this year, I want to say something that I think is important. You see, we Americans have short memories. Seriously short, if you can recall our last Presidential election we were concerned about the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and now all we do is quietly shake our heads about them. Those on the left have moved on to Occupy Wall Street and other things, and those on the right are up in arms about gay people and wrecking the ability of our government to govern. Now, not too many people talk about these wars. I guess it isn't popular for anyone these days. Well guess what, kids? These wars aren't over, and Americans are still dying. You probably already know how I feel about the wars, but this isn't about that. I want to talk to you today about a particular young American. A young person who was probably fairly typical of the soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines who have lost their lives doing the bidding of our government. His name is Nick Manoukian. A husband and father from Lathrup Village, Michigan. He lost his life during his second combat tour in Iraq, in 2006. Remember him. Remember that this young fellow died for his country. Rmember that no matter what your politics are, this country, for the sake of it's own soul, has to remember that the actions of our government have consequences that mean more than political rhetoric. By all accounts (I have been in touch with Nick's mother, Mary, and several of his Marine Corps comrades for a few years now), Nick was a great son, and a first class Marine. He was also a good friend to those who knew him. The loss of this young man is a loss to all of us. I didn't post this on Veteran's Day this year, because I didn't want it to get lost in the general flag-waving and fist pumping that generally happens then. I want people to remember Nick Manoukian on days that aren't so special. I want you to remember this young man who left a grieving, heartbroken mother and wife & child. I want you to remember him for all of those who won't come back from those places. Corporal Nicholas Manoukian, 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, 1984-2006

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