Thursday, June 05, 2008

Final Salute

The New York Times has a powerful mix of words and images in Janet Maslin's article on Jim Sheeler's new book Final Salute. Jim Sheeler's book is based on a 2006 Pulitzer Prize winning series of articles that he wrote for The Rocky Mountain News. I have posted a brief selection of quotes and photos below:

"When 2nd Lt. James Cathey's body arrived at the Reno Airport, Marines climbed into the cargo hold of the plane and draped the flag over his casket as passengers watched the family gather on the tarmac. During the arrival of another Marine's casket at Denver International Airport, Major Steve Beck described the scene as one of the most powerful in the process: "See the people in the windows? They'll sit right there in the plane, watching those Marines. You gotta wonder what's going through their minds, knowing that they're on the plane that brought him home," he said. "They're going to remember being on that plane for the rest of their lives. They're going to remember bringing that Marine home. And they should."
Photo: Todd Heisler/Rocky Mountain News

"Before the burial of James Cathey's body, his casket was covered with the white gloves of the Marines who carried him, along with sand they brought from the beaches of Iwo Jima, and a single red rose."
Photo: Todd Heisler/Rocky Mountain News

"Major Steve Beck and another Marine approach the family home of 2nd Lt. James Cathey, preparing to escort the Catheys to the airport to receive their son's body. Five days earlier, the shadows of Casualty Assistance Call Officers followed the same path, carrying the news no military family ever wants to hear. The gold star flag in the window signifies the death of a loved one overseas."
Photo: Todd Heisler/Rocky Mountain News

The complete story is at:
Books of the Times:
Bearing Witness to the Fallen and the Grieving

Final Salute


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