The following is by my friend, a fellow Marine, Rick Waller. He wrote this for the Veterans program at his church.
Who I Am
by Richard Waller
I venture far from home, family, and friends;
I go to places I’ve never been;
I encounter people I’ve never known;
I see and hear things I’ve never imagined;
My days do not end with the setting sun.
Where I walk I do want it to be known.
When I speak I do not want to be overheard!
You say, “You are brave.”
I say, “I am well trained.”
You say, “You could die.”
I say, “Death is part of a living.”
You say, “I don’t believe in what you are doing.”
I say, “I do!”
You say, “Why do you do it?”
I say, “Because you don’t.”
You say, “That offends me!”
I say, “That is your choice.”
You say, “None of this makes sense to me.”
I say, “If you understood, you would understand.”
I am a defender of the Constitution and Bill of Rights of the United States of America,
For the Nations,
For the inhabitants of the earth:
I do not ask,
What do you believe?
What is your ethnicity?
What is your social status?
Do you like me?
I just defend and prepare to defend.
I train and train some more.
I am disciplined.
I am faithful.
I am trustworthy.
You are safe because I am brave.
I am brave so you can be safe!
Your safety is called FREEDOM.
My bravery is called DUTY.
I am a member of the Armed Forces of the United States of America,
Home of the BRAVE!
Home of the FREE!
Cpl. Richard (Wally) Waller
Chu Lai, RVN