Take a moment to remember the five soldiers who came home from war only to be senselessly murdered here at home.
Take a moment to remember U.S. Navy Petty Officer Randall Smith, who died Saturday morning from injuries received. He was from Paulding County, Ohio, and lived in Georgia. He loved baseball, riding bikes with his three daughters, and occasionally texted Britney Spears lyrics to his friends, apropos of nothing.
Take time to remember Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant Thomas Sullivan, who served two tours in Iraq, earning two Purple Hearts and a Combat Action Medal. Sullivan, "Gunny" to his friends, had the chance to jump a fence and run to safety, but instead he ran into the fire to protect the wounded.
Spare a thought for Marine Corps Sgt. Carson Holmquist from Wisconsin. He came home to his wife Jasmine and son Wyatt in 2014 after two tours in Afghanistan. He loved to hunt, fish, and play football.
Marine Corps Lance Cpl. Skip Wells, just 21, was texting his girlfriend that he couldn't wait to see her again a few minutes before the shooting. He felt the military was his calling - and it was certainly in his blood. His grandpa had served in the Air Force, his mother and grandmother in the Navy. Wells played the clarinet in his high school marching band, enjoyed Civil War reenactments, flag football, and Nerf guns.
Marine Corps Staff Sergeant David Wyatt was only a few minutes away from his home in Hixson Tennessee, where he lived with his wife and two kids. After he came home from his two tours, he was known for spending time talking and listening to wounded vets and fellow soldiers with PTSD. One of those men, Matt Bein, described him as the kind of guy who would literally give you the last dollar in his wallet.
These men were in the military because at some point they decided that their country was more important than their own lives, and every one of them was a hero. We owe them our gratitude.