OPINION: To Honor the 9/11 Fallen, Support Those Serving
History begins where living memories end.
At the tender age of 18, young adults entering the armed services today were seven or eight years old when their world was seemingly set aflame on September 11th, 2001. Too young at the time to fully comprehend those events, they spent most of their childhood watching parents, siblings, and cousins march off to war against a distant, dark enemy.
More than a few would never return. At least 37 military personnel from Hawaii have died in battle since the “global war on terror” began with the Oct. 7, 2001 invasion of Afghanistan. At least 198 more have been wounded in action.
New military recruits grow up knowing that if they enlist, serving in combat against the boogiemen of their youth is a real possibility. Most are also fully aware that they live in a volatile world, where new conflicts can emerge quickly. Yet still, they sign up.
Before the end of this decade, newly enlisted members of our military will have no living memory of the events that unfolded 11 years ago. We’ll have to use history to teach them why so many people lost their lives that day, and why so many more would choose to sacrifice themselves in the years that followed.
Through history, they will learn that knowing who your real enemy is can be no simple task. That in war, victory is never easy, and death is a distinct possibility. And that always, it’s as important to look at why we have enemies, as it is to stand up and fight them.
We are a peaceful island chain whose innocence is occasionally interrupted by the horrors of war. As the memories of past conflicts fade, history should be used as a reminder of why those who watch over us are so important.
Remember those who have been lost, but never forget to support your living guardians.
The following Hawaii military personnel died during the “global war on terror”:
OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM (Afghanistan): October 7th, 2001 to Present
Name, Age, Home City
Abbate, Matthew Thomas, 26, Honolulu, HI
Brostrom, Jonathan Paul, 24, Aiea, HI
Camero, Christopher Labiano, 19, Kailua Kona, HI
Collins, Sean M., 25, Ewa Beach, HI
Fernandez, Kyle Eo, 26, Pearl City, HI
Obakrairur, Jasper Kid, 26, Hilo, HI
Salvacion, Jr, 27, Ewa Beach, HI
Vickers, Kraig Michael Kaleolani, 36, Kokomo, HI
Viray, Don Cayetano, 25, Waipahu, HI
OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM (2nd Iraq War) March 19th, 2003 to December 18th, 2011
Agno, Randy Suyat, 29, Pearl City, HI
Antonio, Charlie Cabay, 28, Kahului, HI
Bandonill, Metodio Amboni, 29, Honolulu, HI
Cajimat, Jay Salcedo, 20, Lahaina, HI
Calapini, Lewis Thomas Duquez, 21, Honolulu, HI
Cariaga, Deyson Ken, 20, Honolulu, HI
Correa, Richard Valiant, 25, Honolulu, HI
Gagalac, Alexander Udarbe, 28, Wahiawa, HI
Garcia, Ruel Mamaril, 34, Wahiawa, HI
Hoe, Nainoa Keali`ihokuhelelani, 27, Kailua, HI
Jeffries, Victor Walter, 52, Honolulu, HI
Kahalewai, Henry Kanehunamok Jr, 44, Hilo, HI
Kanakaole, Eugene Dante Makanani, 19, Maui, HI
Kim, Jeungjin, 23, Honolulu, HI
Lacerna, Reno Sabado, 44, Waipahu, HI
Loa, Jeffrey Sifoa, 32, Waianae, HI
Magaoay, Blake Antonio, 20, Pearl City, HI
Maravillosa, Myla Lumayag, 24, Wahiawa, HI
Marino, Kristen Keola, 20, Honolulu, HI
Montpetit, Michael Jeffrey, 31, Honolulu, HI
Pacleb, Raymond Nava Jr, 31, Honolulu, HI
Sakoda, Steve Makoto, 29, Hilo, HI
Sarno, Cameron B., 43, Waipahu, HI
Sweet, Christopher Perry, 28, Kahului, HI
Tauala, Nimo Westhill Maresala M., 29, Honolulu, HI
Tsue, Daniel Akio, 27, Haleiwa, HI
Tulang, Morgan Charles, 36, Hilo, HI
Walter, Cwislyn K, 19, Honolulu, HI
The following Hawaii residents lost their lives in the September 11th 2001 terrorist attacks:
Georgine Rose Corrigan, 55. Antique dealer. Passenger on United Flight 93.
Maile Hale, 26. Executive at Boston Investor Services. Diner at Windows on the World, 1 World Trade.
Heather Ho, 32. Executive pastry chef at Windows on the World, 1 World Trade.
Richard Yun Choon Lee, 34. Managing director at Cantor-Fitzgerald, 1 World Trade.
Christine Snyder, 32. Arborist. Passenger on United Flight 93.