Memorial Day weekend has commenced with the holiday just tomorrow. As we all prepare to honor the sacrifice made by so many families whose loved ones have put their lives on the line in the defense of our country it is time to look back on those individuals. With an administration that truly values that sacrifice, there is no room for anything less than gratitude. Which is exactly what First Lady Melania Trump showed when she interacted with a Gold Star Family.
“The loss of a child is an intensely painful and forever life-altering event that can shake a parent to the very core of their being, especially if that is an untimely one. Jill Stephenson lost her son — U.S. Army Ranger Benjamin Kopp and she knows all too well what that pain is.
In 2009, Jill received the worst possible news for a parent with their child deployed overseas could ever receive. Her son had been injured, suffering a gunshot wound to the leg. She remembers her first thought was that he was going to lose the leg.
Jill states – “When I got the call Ben was shot, my heart fell into my stomach. I was told he was shot in the leg and had undergone surgery and was recovering. My first thought was that he lost his leg.”
However, the injury turned into a series of worst-case scenarios in the eight days that followed his admittance to Walter Reed Medical Center. Knopp’s body eventually gave out due to the extent of his injuries. He was just twenty-one years old.
As a means of keeping her son’s memory alive and in an effort to help her process her grief eight years ago, Jill states that she has found a means to cope and to heal through sharing her son’s story of selfless sacrifice. She states she lives with the memory every day and that will never go away, however, sharing him with others, what he did, and what he was about, helps her continue to heal.
Through that grieving process and sharing of her son’s story, Jill became a part of TAPS. TAPS is a program that helps military families with the grieving process when a service member is k****d in action. To this day, she still continues her work in advocacy for veterans’ issues all across the country.
She has made at least two trips to Arlington National Cemetery annually since her son’s passing eight years ago. The visits fall in mid-December for Wreaths Across America and over Memorial Day weekend.
With Memorial Day coming up in just a few weeks the mainstream media is ramping up their continuous nonstop bashing of President Donald Trump ramping up into high gear. Many of the mainstream media continue to bash President Trump for his comments about Barack Obama not calling families of our fallen military.
Many in the media and all over Twitter lost their collective minds accusing President Trump of lying saying Obama most certainly did call families of fallen military. In fact, they protested so much the Washington Post did a fact-check…
“From our perusal of news reports and news databases, we could not find any contemporaneous evidence that Obama spoke about such calls or that the White House announced he had called families.”
WaPo quickly noted Obama had, on several occasions, met with the families of fallen soldiers. However, this is something that President Trump has also done as well as sending out letters. Yet while several members of the administration said they “recalled” such phone calls, no records were found. WaPo did, however, find a record of one soldier, Sgt. Sean Collins –
“Still, in early 2011, the family of one fallen soldier, Sgt. Sean Collins told Fox News they had requested a call from Obama and were told his schedule was too packed for a conversation.”
Meanwhile, Jill states she did not get a phone from the Obamas. However, what she did get may be infinitely more personal and much more heartfelt. Jill stated – “I never got a call. The Obamas never sent these, either.” She then shared a simple, yet powerful and heartfelt letter she received from First Lady Melania Trump just after Memorial Day in 2017 that touched her deeply.”
The letter that the First Lady sent to her read as follows,
“Dear Ms. Stephenson,
I wish to offer my heartfelt gratitude for the sacrifices you have made and the high price you and your family have paid to help ensure our freedom.
As a mother, you bear the burden of war in a very personal way. I want to take a moment, on Gold Star Mother’s and Family’s Day, to honor you and your son, Corporal Benjamin Kopp, who laid down his life to protect us, our country, and all we hold dear. His sacrifice will never be forgotten.
I hold you close to my heart and keep you in my prayers.
In just a few short paragraphs, Melania Trump demonstrates what grace and class look like as she extends the compassion of a nation to a grieving family, extending her hand to thank them personally for all they have done to help keep this nation safe.
There is not much else needs to be said, as the first lady’s personalized message to Jill Stephenson on behalf of her son’s ultimate sacrifice speaks volumes. Meanwhile, as usual, the Obamas’ silence speaks volumes as well.”
When someone loses a child there is nothing that can be done that will change the pain they are in. Because nobody can bring back their child. However, one can at least try to bring happiness in the dark cloud they are traveling through. Yet, the Obama family could not even do that. How hard would it have been to just send them a card? not hard at all and with minimal effort. But First Lady Melania Trump certainly did it.
It goes to show how classy, dignified and filled with love the Trump administration is for veterans and servicemembers and their families. They were willing to go out of their way to do something as small as writing a letter in remembrance of their son. Something their predecessors never did. It indicates where their priorities really are.
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