Memorial Day a time to reflect

  • Published
  • By Maj. Gen. David Eichhorn
  • AFFTC, commander
Today, we are all reminded of the triumphs, losses, and memories we, as Americans share. The glory and majesty of our uniquely American legacy, the American dream, American Freedom, was secured through great sacrifice purchased by the blood of our fallen heroes. Memorial Day beckons us to our responsibilities and commitment to be mindful of our fallen - to honor the quiet figures in the presence of our mind.

We see it. We live it. All gave some and some gave all. They were our family, our friends, our co-workers. Why do we go on? Winston Churchill said it best after the British suffered a heavy loss during World War II, "Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, give in. Never give in. Never give in. Never give in."

As testers, we skate on the edge of disaster every time we push the boundaries of technological capability. We take such risk knowing that the work we do is invaluable to our country. We ultimately save lives and protect our nation's vital interests. Sadly, this past year, we count two more souls lost in tragic flight test mishaps. We are surrounded by the memory of Cools and Dash and their contributions to a capable and free United States of America.

We are extremely fortunate to live in this great nation and to be offered the opportunity to contribute to its defense. On this Memorial Day, let us meet to rejoice in the closest bond possible between people -- a bond which suffering has made indissoluble. Find a moment to reflect on our fallen and remember them as contributors at the national level. Such is the importance of what we do and what we protect for posterity.