On Memorial Day weekend, it is important to take time to think about the sacrifices made by our military. Every person who signs up for the military sacrifices something – time, comfort, safety. Some of our brave service men and women, however, make the ultimate sacrifice. Freedom isn’t free!
There have been some great songs recorded through the years that honor the military. I have selected ten of the songs that have touched and moved me over the years. When there are so many from which to choose, it’s not easy to narrow it down to ten. I’m not saying that these are the ten best, but rather these are ten songs that mean something to me.
1. God Bless The USA – Lee Greenwood
“God Bless The USA” has been around almost as long as I can remember. It’s become synonymous with patriotism and American pride. One thing I like about this song is it wasn’t written and recorded during a crisis or time of war. Greenwood wrote the song simply because he wanted to express his pride for his country. I remember this song being almost an anthem during the Gulf War. It also was played in the days following 9/11. I remember being out the first weekend after 9/11 and “God Bless The USA” started playing. Everything stopped. Every man wearing a hat immediately took it off and everyone stood there and listened in silence. It was an amazing moment which I will never forget.
2. Angel Flight – Radney Foster
This is one of those songs that manages to touch me every time I hear it. It’s well written and it tells the story of a pilot whose job is to fly the bodies of fallen soldiers back home. It’s very touching and the video for the song is even more moving.
3. Crazy Being Home – Mark Wills
There are many songs that honor soldiers and our great nation. However, there are few songs bring attention to the battles some soldiers fight once they come back home. That’s why I like “Crazy Being Home.” It talks about the issues soldiers have getting accustomed to civilian life after being used to the military routine. One in eight soldiers suffer from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder when they return. There is also a web site called www.crazybeinghome.com. It gives more information about PTSD and even allows people to post their own stories.
4. Arlington – Trace Adkins
This song tells the story of a soldier that has made the ultimate sacrifice for his country and his pride of being a part of Arlington National Cemetery. When this song was climbing the charts, Adkins learned that it was bringing anxiety and discomfort to families of those serving. The decision was made to stop promoting the song.
5. Home – Dierks Bentley
This song wasn’t just another song for Dierks Bentley. He has said that “Home” is one of his favorite songs that he has written and recorded. It’s a well-written song that reminds us to be proud of our country, as well as remembers the ones who left their home to protect our freedom.
6. American Soldier – Toby Keith
Most soldiers that I have met take their job very seriously and they are very humble as well. They don’t consider themselves super heroes at all. They just consider themselves regular men and women who are just doing what has to be done. “American Soldier” puts all those thoughts in a song.
7. Some Gave All – Billy Ray Cyrus
“Some Gave All” is a great song that reminds us that freedom is not free. It is as powerful now as it was when it was released.
8. Riding With Private Malone – David Ball
Sometimes, it is easy to forget that soldiers are real people – with families, hobbies and dreams. This tells us about a man with a great life, who left it all behind when his country needed his service. It is important to remember that when we hear about a soldier being a killed that it’s more than just a number. It is one more person who won’t be going back two the life he or she lived before serving the country.
9. They Also Serve – John Conlee
I love this song because it remembers those that are at home – the wives, husbands and chidren of the soldiers. They are also impacted and I am glad this song recognizes them.
10. Letters From Home – John Michael Montgomery
Before there was e-mail and Skype, a letter was a soldier’s only link with his or her life. Getting a letter was a huge deal to soldiers. Even now, soldiers love getting mail from back home.
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