Dear Alpha 2-7 Cav Troopers:
Origninal Author: Jack Cunningham
Modified for content by: Jenni Balis, A/2-7 Cav Website Designer

I know I should have written much sooner.
I can’t say why I did not. Out of fear of admitting to myself that you were there,
fighting a war. Or, maybe ashamed. Ashamed that I never accepted the things
you felt you had to do. Whatever it is, I know how it must hurt.

Believe me when I say it hurts me more. I have the burden of your hurt, plus that
of my own. The pain of not being able to show my true feelings towards you.

I am not writing this for the months, or years you served in Vietnam, but for the
many years you were alone with only your brother Veterans.
You served proudly and it went unmentioned.

For a long time, I’ve wanted to express the words.
The words a honorable veteran needs to hear.
For a long time, I’ve wanted to hold you during your times of pain.
GOD knows I wanted to.
And only HE knows why I never found the courage.
I do no remember what I use to say; maybe I do not want to remember.

All I know is I hope that it is not too late to give you those things now.
For years you tried to be a part of my world. Doing everything to please me, just
to be noticed and given a little time and understanding…

I look back and see the demands I placed on your shoulders
when you were young.
“Fight your weaknesses,
and always show strength to others around you.”
Who was I to make such a demand?

I sit here with tears in my heart: finally admitting to myself the one weakness you
must have seen in me and never questioned.
My inability to say the words that I know would have meant so much to you.

“GARRY OWEN and WELCOME HOME.”

You served our country honorably.
Please accept these words now, from my heart.
Please give me chance to be part of your world now.
The world I should have been part of long ago.

Love,
America