Happy Memorial Day: The Soldiers In My Life I’m Grateful For

Today, I am taking a break from blogging about writing and publishing to celebrate Memorial Day–a very important holiday. I hope everyone takes (at minimum) a moment to thank someone they know in the United States Armed Forces. I’d love for everyone to share their stories here. I’m sharing two!

I want to first thank my grandfather, Michael Smith. 

My grandfather, Michael Smith, ran a tank brigade in Korea. He passed away in 2000, but I was able to live with him for a while, and he was a very informative and loving grandfather. This photo is my grandfather, Michael Smith, with my grandmother, Evelyn Smith–my late mother’s parents. (Both have passed since this photo.)

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Now one of my best friends: Raul Diaz.

One of my best friends, Raul Diaz, is a marine finishing his four-year-track this June. I’m very proud of him, and he’s not only a great marine; he’s a great person.  And I’m proud to call him my friend.


Happy Memorial Day! 

Who are you thankful for on this Memorial Day? Share your story below.


P.S. The contest to win one of the free signed paperbacks of Minutes Before Sunset goes until May 29th, so join by commenting below (clarify you’d like to be a part of the contest.) I’m looking forward to sending them out 😀

11 thoughts on “Happy Memorial Day: The Soldiers In My Life I’m Grateful For

  1. Hi Shannon, what a beautiful pic. of your grandparents. Mine have passed away too, but the memories are still so clear. And to your friend Raul, a big thanks for his service. We are thankful to my brother (Inion’s Uncle Robert) who served as a Marine Corps. colorguard at the whitehouse when he was in service. He was injured after eight years and honorably discharged. My other brother served as a Green Beret for ten. And the list goes on, as most of the men in my family served in the Marine, Army, Navy, Airforce and even my great grandfather who was a merchant marine. What a wonderful post to honor those men and women who serve this country proudly. We are so happy to have joined your site and look forward to future posts.

    1. Wow! What an amazing family you have there. I’m thanking them (through you, of course.) That’s great. Thank you sharing, and I’m glad to hear of so many amazing soldiers. Looking forward to communicating over future posts. Thank you for sharing your story.

  2. My dad, who passed away a year ago, served in World War II. He did not see any action, but he was in England during his tenure. I also want to give a shout out to my best girlfriend who served 14 years in active military and is now in the Reserves as a paralegal. She is honored to serve her country and I am very proud of her commitment to duty. Thank you, Natasha, for serving your country!

    1. bikerchick57,
      Thanks for sharing your story about your father and Natasha. As I was reading about Natasha I kept thinking, “What a woman!” Sounds like two amazing people.

  3. Great post and pictures! My dad served in the Army, as was an uncle (Jerry), while another uncle was a marine. When Jerry passed away two years ago, he was buried in the cemetery reserved for soldiers. It was a very moving service with three rifle volleys–a lovely tribute to a man who served his country.

  4. My husband is my military hero. Served as a Green Beret in the Army Special Forces in Vietnam. Served his country for 24 years. I thank God every day he made it home. He is such a humble man and never talks about his time in Nam but on days like this he is especially quiet. I know he is remembering his comrades that didn’t make it. Freedom is not free and we all need to remover that, not just today.

    1. jtailele,
      Thank you for sharing. Your husband is a great man! I have the utmost respect for green berets. My late roommate’s father was one. The amount of dedication they give is astounding.

  5. Nice post and photo of your grandparents! My grandfather was a medic during WWII, my Dad was in the Navy and now my son is an ROTC Army cadet so I think about all of them. I like what Jtailele said, “Freedom is not free.” I’m going to remember that one.

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