Honoring our fallen sons


Today, the Utah Legislature honored the Utah men who gave their lives in service to our country during 2010. Representative Ryan Wilcox made the following remarks:

Madame Speaker, fellow representatives, and distinguished guests:

It is with the utmost humility, respect, and appreciation that I address this body today. There are but few moments in life when gratitude ceases to be a virtuous gesture, and instead, becomes a solemn duty… even a sacred honor. This is indeed one of these moments.

Today we gather in sober remembrance of 7 sons, 7 brave and courageous men, who laid down their lives in the line of duty at the call of this nation. Today, it is our privilege to revere their service and our obligation to honor those they loved, and left behind.

In a similar situation President Abraham Lincoln wrote these words to the mothers of five fallen soldiers; He said: “I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom.” In words less eloquent than those of President Lincoln I too wish to pay special tribute to the mothers of Utah’s own fallen. These women are primarily responsible for raising these sons of liberty, these men who have left a legacy of courage. Because of their courage under fire, because of their sacrifice, we remain safe in land of the free; we have become the home of the brave.

Freedom is a precious gift, bestowed upon as at an enormous cost. Utah’s seven, OUR seven, are amongst the thousands who have unselfishly sacrificed their own liberty, to protect ours. We must never forget that our ability to pursue happiness is a product of the blood they shed.

Many of them rushed into danger, knowing full well the risk. Each of these, our sons, has added his own testimony to the generations of men and women whose sacrifice we remember each time we hold our hands to our hearts…that freedom isn’t free.

For most of these men life had hardly begun. Yet, when the moment of decision came, these men hoped that the sacrifice they were about to make would make a difference. Yet, more than that, that their final sacrifice would keep others from having to do the same. Such selfless love must never be taken for granted… It must never become a faded memory. It is to that end that we honor these men today.

Courage is not confined to the field of battle… it is found in every home that has sent a son or daughter off to war, it is in the heart of every patriot who has served this nation, it is ever present in the names etched on the walls and memorials of small towns, big cities, and in the memories of those who remain.

To the men and women, and especially the children here today who have had to sacrifice a father, a brother, a husband, or a son in defense of our freedoms, we offer our deepest gratitude. Today they are not only your sons, today, they are our sons too. You have endured unthinkable grief… may God grant you His lasting peace and may you know of our love and respect for you and your sons.

Madame Speaker, members of the body, would you please join me in offering our gratitude through a moment of silence on behalf of these heroes.



2 Responses to “Honoring our fallen sons”

  1. Kim Says:

    Thanks for posting. Mother of Lcpl Nigel Olsen.

  2. Week 5 Message from House Republican : Vox Populi Says:

    […] On Friday, the House recognized the families of Utah soldiers who died in the past year in the service of our country. Utah is eternally grateful and will remember the sacrifice of the brave men who gave their life in our defense. The full remarks can be found here. […]

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