I’ve been thinking and praying a lot lately with the phrase “this common life”. After a year of so much separation- physically, socially, emotionally, and politically - I wonder often about what it means to live a “common life”. What does it mean to live for more than yourself, to make decisions that benefit the whole, sometimes even over your own comfort or safety?
I started rucking about a month ago and it’s a great way for me to get the time and space to let these kinds of questions rattle around in my head and heart. My heavy pack is the thing that is external to me, but I choose to carry it. It’s a ritual in capacity.
This morning, I ruck as part of a memorial event for the military professionals (and pups) who lost their life on August 6th 2011. On that day, a United States CH-47 Chinook military helicopter operating with the call sign EXTORTION 17 was shot down, marking the most devastating day in Naval Special Warfare history and the single largest loss of life for U.S. forces since the war in Afghanistan began in October 2001. The US military lost 31 warriors that day.
Joggin’ for Frogmen was created to honor these heroes and all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom. What began as a single 3.1 mile race in San Diego has expanded to a worldwide event hosting thousands of participants with a mission to to activate communities from around the world to honor the sacrifices of our service members and veterans, and to support the families of our fallen heroes. These races bring communities together to celebrate the lives of America’s fallen and to express our deep gratitude to those still serving. This year marks the 10 year anniversary of that tragic day in 2011 and our efforts to honor those brave men and support their families.
When I ruck today, I do so after praying with the names of these 31 warriors. I do so imagining our common life and the ways we could live up to it. I do so believing that remembering is one way of stitching us back together.
No matter your beliefs, I invite you to join me in remembering these warriors. Read about them today. Google some of the details you saw here and think about their families.
And, if you’re feeling called, make a small donation to the Travis Manion Foundation through the link below. I’ll be out there either way. Join me?
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