Today, sixty years ago, the Korean War Armistice was signed. It is for many of us in the Land of the Round Door Knobs, a 'forgotten war' though if you are related by blood or history to any of those who served and died there, you probably can argue about the use of 'forgotten.' The dead never forget-it is we, the living, who too often do. Those who had John Kelly as a son, a brother, an uncle, a husband and a father don't forget.
But the rest?
Half a century and more ago, the world was very different but very the same. We lived in fear; then, of the Red Menance and the "Atom Bomb"- now, of war without end against terrors so profound and pervasive we can neither name nor number them.
I sometimes wonder, assuming there is another six decades left in this beaten and bloody pretty blue planet on which we live, what will our children's children think of who we were and what we did when we have been reduced to whispers and shades? Will they, as was the case for Carlos Bongioanni of Stars and Stripes, have an opportunity for a walk with those remembering without rancor or regret?
Will there be tears? Will we still be able to cry for what we had and for what we've lost or, like so much else from sixty years earlier, will those who have followed, like we who have followed, just look on in numbed bewilderment unable to understand and unwilling to try?
It's not yet too late to say thank you to those who served and survived to grow old in our midst. So many did not. There are far worse things than being dead. Being forgotten, reduced to less than a memory as if you had never lived, is very nearly all of them.