Desert Storm VII Corps Veterans and your Families,
On this 27 May 2019, Memorial Day, this special day now sacred in America we honor and remember all our men and women who died in military service to our Nation. On this most special and sacred day, Denise and I, on behalf of our Association President Mark Rado and our VII Corps Desert Storm Veterans Association Board, want to thank you and your Families for your own service and our service together in VII Corps during Desert Storm as together with all of you we honor and remember this Memorial Day and every day our own Fallen, those 111 of our VII Corps Desert Storm Soldiers who in President Lincoln’s words, “gave that last full measure of devotion.”
This year at our 28th Anniversary Reunion 22-24 February 2019 in Ft. Hood Texas of our victory in 1991, and as we do at each Reunion, at the Soldier Memorial Chapel there, Chaplain Col (ret) Dave O’Connell, conducted a military Memorial Service, where our past Association President MG (ret) John Altenburg called out each of their names one by one. One of our former commanders gives commander remarks as is right at these ceremonies. This year LTG (ret) Randy House war time commander of 2d Brigade (Black Jack Brigade)) 1st Cavalry Division, gave inspiring and deeply moving remarks.
That same day 23 February 2019 at Ft. Hood we also visited and paced a wreath in a ceremony at our Memorial Tree, dedicated last year at Ft. Hood as an everlasting Memorial to remember and honor our own Fallen.
We said at the end of Desert Storm over 28 years ago that “we will never forget” and we have not forgotten our VII Corps comrades nor as a Nation all those who have fallen in military service. For all of us, we also remember those of our ranks who have died since we served together on Desert Storm, some recently, including this past year, our wartime Commander In Chief President George H. W. Bush and our former 1st AD Commander Gen (ret) Ron Griffith.
May we all pause in our own way this Memorial Day 2019 in deep remembrance to honor and remember our own Fallen and all those who gave it all in military service–and their Families who bear the pain of their loss.
We value our service with each of you and look forward to seeing many of you at our 29th anniversary Reunion the weekend of 21-23 February 2020 In Washington DC with details to follow.
Fred M. Franks, Jr.
Gen, US Army (ret)
Chairman VII Corps DSVA