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« 4th of July weekend (Part I). | Main | 4th of July weekend (Part II). »


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Jamie S

That's an amazing video. It gave me goosebumps. God bless all those who are fighting for our freedom and to protect our country.


that is so touching. As a canadian i have never experienced this.

Shelley G

Thanks Karen and Josh, for the reminder of our priorities. This is such a touching tribute, and such an important reminder for us all to be thankful for our military personnel protecting us everyday. God bless our soldiers and their families. What a beautiful country we live in.


I am not sure if you are on facebook, but I am and made a very similiar comment on my wall there yesterday. It read...

" I am so tired of all the MJ stuff! More important people die everyday without a mention. This guy's JOB was singing and dancing. What about those whose job is defending our freedoms and sacrifice their lives to protect us? They deserve so much more than MJ and yet we don't even hear about them. It's really sad the way America views heroism and fame."

Good post, Karen!

PS. Can't wait to see the rest of the 4th pictures tomorrow! :-)

kelly barron

Thank you for posting this! Those people lining the streets, hands over their hearts and waving the American flag....they make me proud to be an American. God bless all of our soldiers and their families.

Laura Carter

Well said Karen! Thank you (and Josh) for posting this! My husband and I were talking about this very thing. We are so humbled and grateful for the service and sacrifices of our military. They deserve to be "front and center" in our minds, hearts and prayers daily.


Karen, I watched it twice and cried the entire time. I am Canadian and we have lost many of our soldiers as well. A local couple lost their only child two years ago on Easter Sunday in Afghanistan, he was only 19 years old. In a city with only 70,000 people it was a heartwrenching time. Thank you for posting this and I so admire all those folks who took the time to honor this brave young man.


Thanks so much for sharing that tribute to a REAL hero. (And People is my guilty pleasure. It's too expensive to subscribe, but I love waiting rooms with People. I always pick one up when I travel.)


It is always hoped that something good will come out of something bad. It's sad, Michael Jackson's untimely death, but I am hearing this same sentiment - about our REAL heroes dying - from many, many places. Maybe that is the good that will come from all the publicity surrounding Michael Jackson's death - maybe many will realize that alot of this country has its priorities all askew.

I don't have it in me to watch the video yet- I need to work myself up to it - having had my son return home safe and sound from Iraq a few months ago. But he is not the same, and he has had deaths in his company to deal with. But I already know I'll be thankful for it after I watch it. Thanks for continuing to respect and support the military.

Stacey B

Wow Josh Downs...thanks for putting this back into perspective. And making me cry.

I want to ask everyone to also remember those who come home with serious injusries. My friend nephew is one of 20-something triple amputees from the war in Iraq.


Wow - I'm speechless as I'm typing this thru teary eyes...
All of those Georgians who came out for that - amazing.
I need to find out if we do anything like that where I live...
I would love to help give the tribute...for those who have come home - both safely and fallen...
Does anyone know how you can help pay respects?
and Thank you Karen for posting this!


seriously amazing....i dont think i have ever looked at an American flag the same after 9-11-01 and I will never take my freedom for granted ....THANK YOU to every single soldier out there that fights for our country....what an amazing amazing (and unbelievably heart crushing) video....


Thank you for reminding us the real heros! Such touching video.

SueB, Ont.Canada

Amazing and moving video. I live near the 401 in Ontario,Canada, between Trenton (30 min. to the east) and Toronto (60 min. to the west). This section of the highway has been renamed the Highway of Heroes. This week will see three more of our soldiers return home, one this past Monday and two more to follow tomorrow (Thursday). Hundreds of people line the bridges between Trenton and Toronto to pay there respects to the soldiers who have lost their lives. Many police and fire departments line this route, as well as many members of our local legions. A friend just returned home from Afghanistan on July 1st. after serving a year there, he is an RCMP officer who lives in my town, he voluntered to serve over there to train other officers, we are so thankful he returned home safe. Tell Josh Downs thank-you.

Sara husband just blogged about this very thing today. it out. It has a youtube of another soldier out of Georgia that passed. Words can't describe.


Karen and (Josh),

Thank you so much for posting this and reminding people who the real heroes are - I was deeply moved.

just a reader

Thank you Karen for this lovely post, for showing us those great Georgians and what we all should really be focusing on instead of MJ.

Cindy Welch

Thank you, this made me stop and feel it deep into my soul


Wow..I am astounded that the fine people of Georgia paid such an incredible tribute to this fallen hero. What a gift for his grieving family, and a tribute to the man he was. I salute not only Sgt. Beale and his family, but ALL of the people who gave up their time to honor one of our country's true heroes.
Thank you for sharing that, Karen. It was the best...


Thank you for posting this. We should say a pray everyday for the ones that pay the price for our freedom, the freedom that we take for granted everyday.


Wow...powerful...touching...heartbreaking...thanks for the reality check.


this year the 4th was a new experience for me...with my husband in iraq, a quiet weekend gave me the time to ponder the REAL meaning of freedom in this country.

and i felt the need to write:

thanks for the reminder...


Thank you so much for sharing this. It is so, so true that our real heroes are too easily forgotten. This is a touching video. I wish all Americans would watch it and wake up! Thanks.

Karen F.

Thank you.

Lizanne Rasmussen

Thank you so much for posting this. My husband is serving in Iraq right now. It touches my heart to see things like this, and to know of all the people who are grateful for the sacrifices all our soldiers are making over there. Thank you so much for posting this.

Grace P

Thank You! The Media has turned into the paparazzi. There is no balance at all. This was heart warming. I will share it with friends and family. Grace


I'm so grateful that you posted this reminder of what and who is REALLY important. This was a beautiful tribute to a fallen soldier, and to all soldiers.


Thank you for posting this Karen, I have goosebumps. I am a proud American and couldn't agree more with how you said we need to honor the fallen.


Thank you Karen & yes Josh you are right. Makes you wonder where our priorities lie. My husband & I are both prior military & I must say this made me cry the entire time thru it. Thanks for sharing. Kathy


Thank you.

My tear ducts are now clear.

What a great reminder for all of us.




Thanks, Karen, for your comment. Huge fan of your talent.

Thanks also for this post and for honoring those who are truly deserving.


had a very teary cry this morning while watching...then i had the is amazing what the armed services do for our country...thank you

Marilyn T

Thank you, Josh, for putting this into perspective. Thank you, Karen, for posting this. It touched my heart. All the people lining the streets saluting, waving the US flag, or hand over their heart. . .it made me proud to be an American. God Bless our soldiers and their families.


Thank you, Karen. Amazing. . . .


Thanks for posting this. We all need to be constantly reminded of our heros.
On another note....I am facinated with the Jon and Kate drama too, and I'm not sure why! I liked watching the show and seeing the kids grow up and now I feel so bad for them.

Mrs. Dunbar

Thank you for this and for bringing all of us Americans back to reality. Those who serve, those who commit their lives and families lives to serving our country are the true heroes.


I haven't watched it yet, but thank you Karen. Well said!
I was tired of hearing about Michael Jackson about five minutes after it was announced. It is heart breaking to know that so many men and women who have given their lives for their country go unrecognized and MJ gets 14 days of media coverage for what?


Karen, thank you for sharing this. I watched the entire thing. BEAUTIFUL!
I am absolutely disgusted in our media! Newspapers, magazines, news channels.......why aren't the true American Heros the main focus?!?!?


Josh Downs couldn't be more right. I hope for the day when our country gets its priorities in order.

Thank you, Sergeant First Class John C. Beale. Thanks to you and your brothers and sisters, serving our country with honor. I will be forever grateful.

tara pollard pakosta

hey, next time warn me to get the tissue box...that was so heart breaking, I could hardly see from crying, but what a GREAT tribute to that soldier and all soldiers and their families. I made my girls watch it too and we talked about the sacrifice those soldiers are making for our families & our freedom. thanks for sharing.

love your pix!


Very moving tribute. I cried through the whole thing. All of our soldiers deserve a homecoming like this. God bless you all!

Laura L.

Thank you! I couldn't have said it better myself!
I've been in that procession line, seeing the streets lined with people waving flags, flags hanging from fire trucks, business signs thanking my nephew for his ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. Unless you've been there you would never ever know what it feels like to see so many people supporting not only the soldier but the soldier's family. I cried thru this whole video remembering that day for our family 3 years ago this month.
Thank you to all the soldiers and their families. I pray for you all every day!
And thank you Karen and Josh for reminding people who our REAL heroes are!!!

deAnne Wakefield

This killed me! My 19 year old son is a Marine and headed to Iraq in 4 weeks. I was bawling from the beginning just hearing Toby Keith's song. God bless our military, whether home here in the USA or serving over seas. They are the heart and soul of our country and deserve to be honored everyday. They are the reason we have the freedoms we do. And thank you Josh Downs for reminding us that they should always be noticed first in the news.


Karen and Josh thank you for sharing. This is so true, I too liked Michael Jackson, he was full of talent but (sorry if I offend anyone) he was a freak. When our wonderful society places him on a pedestal as if he were Mother Theresa or Gandhi there is something wrong!! This morning they were saying on TV "where is Michael Jacksons body?" oh please...enough is enough! Let the man rest in peace and lets focus on more important things like this posting...lets focus on the people who are giving up their lives every day so that we can live in peace. Thank you and I will forward this tribute to everyone I know. ( I am with you Karen on the Jon and Kate

Melissa Boyd

As a Georgian, I'm honored and touched. I'm a child of the 80s and I was one of the millions who bought Thriller and danced to his music. I've watched some of the coverage of the turnout for MJ and just shook my head. It saddens me that fallen soldiers get a sound byte of maybe 30 seconds, while a pop icon garners hours and specials devoted to him. Then I look at the turnout of citizens in this video, the spirit of those citizens, and it makes me believe there is still good in this world. If you take all those citizens and the citizens who have turned out for other fallen soldiers around our great country,it touches me more than current events. Thanks for sharing!!!!! Now if the news would point out the stats that Josh shared . . .


Well said.......Thank you for sharing this amazing video. My husband and I have 3 sons serving our country in 3 different branches and this brought tears to our eyes and put a lump in our throats. They make us very proud.

Thank you to all of our soldiers and their families!


First of all, I loved every one of your pics, even the ones you took on horseback. I love your blog and could completely relate to you about buying People magazine, I'm addicted. My subscription ran our and now I pay twice as much to buy it on the newstand and not tell my I feel the same about MJ, I am a fan of his but, many soldiers and their families make the ultimate sacrifice for their countries and it is often overlooked by the media. I am Canadian and we have lost 3 soldiers this week. Thank you for your beautiful post, thank God for our freedom and God bless our soldiers.


Thank you so much for posting this. Since Michael Jackson's death, I haven't watched the news much, because I think the coverage of the death of the entertainer has been "this side of ridiculous". Yes...I too had M.J.'s Thriller poster on my bedroom wall as a teenager-but I think it's more important to report about the soldiers that have given thier lives for this wonderful country we live in, and for the freedoms that we have. Thank You Josh for pointing this out, and Thank You Karen for posting this.


I so have to agree with Josh. It's one of the things that I think is so Ugly about our country. If we cared half as much about the real folks we should be honoring instead of John and Kate plus 8, Michael Jackson, or Steve McNair and others, think what the world would be like. Instead we pay attention to those who do the wrong things- it's an unsatiable urge for so many- and we reward their behavior by paying attention to it- the media then pays attention to it, the paparazi, the commercials, and whatever they may have sold, etc.

How much more time do we spend on celebs than the everyday heros or the heros who give up everything for us?


Thanks for posting reality and for the real good hearted folks that are out there! And all of the sacrifices our soldiers and their families make each and every day!


Karen, I haven't been able to get this post out of my head for two weeks! and today, I watched and listened to this video, yet again. The lyrics to the songs have moved me. My co-worker Jill, who was so incredibly proud of her 21 year old son serving as an Army Ranger, lost her son this weekend. She is an amazing woman and has been so strong since he was injured. I would love to share the music with her, do you know who sings those songs?

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