War keeps us filled with worry daily

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 14, 2008

This article is written in reference to the article that was published in The Democrat in August about Mrs. Odesia Minor — a military mother.

I, too, can relate to the hoping, praying and to the fear you feel each day. You lie in bed nightly, praying and crying for your loved ones. It’s daily fear.

I have been a military girl most of my life. I had four uncles of wars before the 1968 Vietnam Conflict, when my baby brother, David Jones, was killed. I am also a mother of four military sons.

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The oldest spent 16 years in the Army, part of which was the Desert Storm Conflict. My second son spent a tour in the Navy. My third son was in the Army, and my fourth son was a Marine and in the Iraq conflict. That dedication was passed on to my two grandsons. One joined the Marines and the other one joined the National Guard and Army. Each was part of the Iraq conflict.

So, it’s been a life very much filled with a lot of fear, lots of tears, a lot of nights spent praying and hoping for God’s grace and protection for our children.

When you, or I, watch the daily news about the military combat, your heart seems to leap out of your body wondering if the mishap was your family member. You just want the time to pass so that your child can come home.

And when they come on a furlow/leave, it is sheer joy just to have them home and in one piece.

And when it’s time for them to leave, your heart fills with fear and deep sadness. You ask yourself “Lord, I wonder will I see them again?”

Then the fear, prayers and meditation start all over again, day and night. As I look back, thanks be to God, all have made it back safe and in one piece, except for my brother.

To anyone who has not been in a military situation, you can’t really know the toll it takes on a mother’s life or family’s life.

So when it comes to voting for the next president, yes, you do wonder about his views on bridging the gap of war and peace.

Every day now, even though all of my family is home, I pray for all those who are in the military and for their families.

I pray that God will keep your sons, daughters, fathers and husbands safe until you all are united together again for good.

Yes, Mrs. Minor, it is a constant fear — hoping and praying — each day and night.

Annie Q. Hill-Smith is a Natchez resident and a military mom.