It was a sad day for our country as three Army Reserve engineers killed in Jordan, including a local South Jersey resident, arrived Friday morning at Dover Air Force Base.
My Money Island NJ home office is directly east of Dover Air Force Base eight miles across the Delaware Bay and so we see and hear the loud large low-flying cargo planes coming in for a landing. Over the years, I have paused many times to reflect when that familiar sight and sound passes overhead. It is not because I deliberately want to observe and reflect. These planes shake the cabin and make it too loud to continue a conversation when they pass. Every time it happens, I take a moment to think about the young soldiers. I also think about my own socially unpopular but deeply engrained beliefs of passivity.
This article today brought memories of the many times before 2021 that soldiers killed in Afghanistan flew overhead. It got to the point where I could associate a recent tragic news story to a specific plane a day or two days later. Over 2,400 soldiers were killed and flown back this way since 2000. It has been quiet since 2021 and I guess that I naively hoped that we would not see and hear this ever again.
Over the course of my entire lifetime, over 22,400 soldiers killed in military action overseas were flown to Dover Air Force Base this way to the military mortuary there. Tragic. Each and every one.
(The photo is the unusually bright lights of Dover Air Force base as seen from the porch security camera tonight. The additional lighting might be related to the ongoing military action).