He was only nine years old when he told his dad, "I wanna be a soldier." His dad was amused and figured he’d forget about it, and maybe become an athlete. But he didn’t.
Lance Corporal Matthew Snyder saw his childhood dream come too. He graduated from high school and joined the Corps. He served at a couple of duty stations before he was deployed.
Your dream is to count the days and be there and see the American flag waving when your son arrives home from the war. Mr. and Mrs. Snyder arriveda t the airport on time. But the only flag was draped across a coffin. He was just twenty when, as a Marine, Matthew Snyder lost his life in Iraq.
The ensuing days were difficult, calling friends, making the funeral arrangements.
But you do what you have to do. Lance Corporal Snyder was doing what he loved to do.
He served his country with honor.
The funeral was solemn, but it was to offer closure on one young amazing life.
Things were going as planned until…
Protesters – carrying banners that said "pray for more dead kids" and "thank God for dead soldiers," and "God hates fag enablers" and chanting:
They turned America
Over to fags;
They're coming home
In body bags.
Fred Phelps, supposed pastor of Westboro Baptist Church rallies his congregation (mostly family members) use innocent children to deliver the message of hate and fear. Westboro goal is to attack the memory of our departed heroes, to strip their loved ones of their dignity, and to use abuse and intimidation as a tool for preventing surviving family members from reaching closure over their loss.
Matthew’s father is suing Westboro. I say "Huzzah." It’s a private law suit. I hope there are more. Mr. Phelps does this frequently. Yeah, like that – freedom of speech – perhaps you’ve heard of it. Oh, wait. The very thing Lance Corporal Snyder died to protect.
This is an actual part of the lawsuit (http://fl1.findlaw.com/news.findlaw.com/cnn/docs/pi/snyderwbc22307acmp.pdf
the defendants (Westboro Baptist Church) said:
"These turkeys are not heroes. They are lazy, incompetent idiots looking for jobs because they're not qualified for honest work…they voluntarily joined a faginfested army to fight for a fag-run country now utterly and finally forsaken by God who Himself is fighting against that country."
Snyder’s family won the lawsuit. There’s much discrepancy as to how much. Who cares? No amount will recover the dignity lost, the honor stripped.
But wait there’s more. The pathetic Phelps are appealing – and the court has ruled that Snyder must pay the court costs for the appeal. What? It’s true.
Does Phelps go searching out military gays? No. He interrupts any military funeral because he believes the military supports and enables gays.
I guess this hit me – because. I have a picture of my 7- year old grandson sitting behind a 50- calibre machine gun, wearing a helmet – with a delightful boyish grin on his face. I now have a picture of my 24-year-old grandson sitting behind a 50-calibre machine gun with that same grin…taken in Iraq.
He wanted to be a Marine since he was seven. And he is one helluva Marine. He has done two tours to Iraq, and a West-Pac tour, and has received several commendations.
But here’s the deal…for him and Lance Corporal Snyder and thousands of others
"Not for fame or reward, not lured by ambition or goaded by necessity, but in simple obedience to duty." --Inscription at Arlington Cemetery
There is still much talk about whether or not Matthew Snyder was gay. His dad says he wasn’t. Does it matter? Hell no!
"Each of these heroes stands in the unbroken line of patriots who have dared to die that freedom might live and grow and increase in its blessings." -- Franklin Delano Roosevelt
My heart is hurting for so many reasons. I love my country. I love my God. God has nothing to do with the Phelps group. They are not Christians. They are using that name. Just because I call myself a diva – and sing (well or poorly) doesn’t make me a diva. Naming the name of Christian (wearing the rhinestone Jesus pin, and using the bumper stickers) doesn’t make you one. Radical Rights are not necessarily Christians…nor are they right.
I love the military.
I was a military wife. I’m a military grandma, and soon I will be a military mom. Our government may not be perfect, but it’s still the best so far. That’s why people are still scrambling to get into our country.
Lance Corporatl Matthew Snyder RIP