I am a Marine and a combat veteran who served in Operation Desert Shield/Operation Desert Storm. I was given your editorial from Dec. 7, “Young Marines come to honor an old Marine’s service.” First, “thank you” for the article about Otto Wehmeyer’s contribution to our country and to the Chamorro people on Guam. Second, I want to say “thank you” to all the Marines before me.
I, too, ask myself the same question that Sgt. Wehmeyer asked: “Have I made a difference? Have I helped the world to change and made it better?” It’s hard these days.
Sunday, after church, I went to lunch with family and the conversation went to the NFL player who doesn’t stand when “our” National Anthem is played. Well, as you can imagine, I was passionate with my answer. “I served and fought that we as Americans have a right to express ourselves, but just because ‘we’ have the right doesn’t make it right to say or do anything we please. It’s called respect.”
There are ways we can express our freedoms, but not standing for our National Anthem is not one of them. One of my nephews goes to Althoff and is the kicker for the football team. When they played Rochester at the Lindenwood University stadium, it was filled with about 4,000 to 5,000 fans. I saw no one taking a knee or not standing when “our” anthem was played.
Thanks again for the reminder for this Marine to honor the other Marines and all other service members who went before, and to tell the Marines to come that it’s not about them anymore. When we earn the right to be called U.S. Marines, we have a responsibility “to GOD, Country, Corps.” That’s our creed.
Semper Fi, Mr. Otto.
DeWayne B. Love, University City, Mo.