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Bittersweet Homecoming

October 9, 2008

Tomorrow, Army PFC Tavarus D. Setzler will return home to Jacksonville.

I’ve stared at that sentence for about 20 minutes now. I wish I could tell you he was coming home to his fiancee that he planned to marry next month, or to hug his family, or to go hang out with his friends this weekend and be reminded of a life worth living and fighting for. I wish I could tell you that, but I can’t.

I can’t tell you because this brave young man is coming home for the last time. He was killed by a roadside bomb last week in Iraq. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends right now. I pray that God give them strength and that they find comfort in one another and in the memory of a loved one who paid the ultimate price for the freedom of others.

To Tavarus, thank you for your honorable service and your sacrifice. I have faith that you have been received into God’s loving embrace and that your heart is finally at peace.

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