|Manila American Cemetery, March 2013|
I want to share a personal note. I recently had the privilege of visiting the Manila American Cemetery and Memorial in the Philippines. When the taxi picked me up in front of my hotel, I noticed he had a nice sounding stereo. I told him he could turn up the volume. He was playing a CD by Dire Straits. The next tract that played was "Brothers In Arms." I thought...how fitting. That mournful song concluded as he dropped me off in front of the cemetery gates. With my camera in hand, and a long list of names to obtain, I began randomly browsing the grounds. At first I saw one...then three...then an entire row. White marble crosses marked with the inscription: Here Rests In Honored Glory A Comrade In Arms Known But To God.
Three thousand, six hundred of these crosses. Randomly placed among the rows of the known soldiers. I have visited many national cemeteries, but never have had an emotional impact as this place did. To walk the entire cemetery and to view all the names on the Tablets of the Missing is an experience that will humble anyone. It will hit you like a ton of bricks. These men died for their country so I can be free to travel to such a place. Fifty-plus thousand names. Like walking in the pages of a history book.
Added by: Tim Cook