Monday, April 27, 2009

As Fallen Soldiers Return Home, Chaplains Comfort the Living

This piece from the American Forces Press Service does a good job of describing one important facet of a military chaplain's work.

DOVER AIR FORCE BASE, Del., April 24, 2009 – The night sky looked calm and tranquil from a gently soaring aircraft, miles above the Eastern Seaboard towns below. However, there was nothing tranquil or calm in the hearts of one family on board, traveling to Dover Air Force Base to witness the dignified transfer of their son’s remains.

Air Force Chaplain (retired Lt. Col.) David Sparks counsels a fellow Port Mortuary team member at Charles C. Carson Center for Mortuary Affairs at Dover Air Force Base, Del., April 21, 2009. U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Kevin Wallace
(Click photo for screen-resolution image);high-resolution image available.

Their son, their Marine, their hero had paid the ultimate sacrifice in the mountains of Afghanistan only the day before. The staff at the Air Force Mortuary Affairs Operations Center would carefully prepare his remains for transfer to his final resting place.

As the family arrived at the Dover flightline, the mother’s tear chalice overflowed and her emotions began to stream from her eyes. Her husband quickly comforted her with his embrace as a Port Mortuary chaplain swiftly made his way over to console the grieving couple.

Read the whole piece here:

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Mad Padre

Mad Padre
Opinions expressed within are in no way the responsibility of anyone's employers or facilitating agencies and should by rights be taken as nothing more than one person's notional musings, attempted witticisms, and prayerful posturings.


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