As I was researching U.S Army Specialist Lori Ann Piestewa’s story and the many women who came before and after her, who chose a path that ended with their ultimate sacrifice in the service of others. I was struck by the many faces that looked out at me from over the centuries. Some jovial and smiling as if they had a secret that could only be shared by a unique sisterhood of women who served in the military. Others were stern, serous, all business. As if they knew, the trails they blazed would require every ounce of bravery and determination they could muster in the face of incredible odds.
So many women with so many stories to tell. I was so entranced by these women I was certain I had found my next career as a Women’s Military History Storyteller. Who knows, I just may follow that path one of these days to see where it leads.
But when I look upon Pictures of Lori Ann Piestewa, I see a smile that can light up a barracks, and a calmness and resolve that knows Life is sacred… Freedom is sacred… and our duty to protect those we love, our families and friend, our way of life, our homeland, may require sacrifice on our part. I see a readiness to give herself over to something bigger than herself as she had her entire life.
Lori Ann’s service honored her past as she looked forward to her future. Her courage and selflessness exemplify the very best of who we are.
For me, she is the Bright Lighter who teaches us that death is not the end of our story when we commit our lives to something Bigger than ourselves.
In honoring Lori Ann … we honor all who have given their lives in service to our country.