23 March 2010

"Dear Dad, I'm sorry if you're reading this . . . "

Marine Gunnery Sgt. Robert Gilbert in Afghanistan. Photo courtesy of the Gilbert family.

The letter sat on the dresser for four years.

Robert Gilbert never opened it. He only touched the envelope when he needed to dust around it. He wanted to give it back to his son unopened.

Every time his Marine son was deployed, his son would ask, "You still got my letter?"

His dad never wanted to read what was inside an envelope marked: "Dad, open this if I am wounded. Love, Robert."

The call to open it came March 8.

"Is Robert Gilbert there?" a voice from Marine headquarters in Quantico, Va., said.

"Junior or Senior?" Robert said.


The father felt his stomach drop even before he heard the words: "Your son has been injured in Afghanistan."

When he heard his son received "possibly a mortal wound," he sat on the bed, opened the yellow envelope and pulled out four handwritten pages of spiral notebook paper.

I'm sorry if you're reading this . . .

Just read: A father's promise, a son's sacrifice for his country.


SOlson said...

My heart goes out to you. Thank you for sharing your strory about your son. You must be so proud to produce such a wonderful person. May God watch over you and your family during such terrible loss.

Erik said...

Thanks for sharing MaryAnn.  Our sympathies to the Gilbert family for your loss.  You have much to be proud of..."Where do we get such men?"

God bless.

MaryAnn said...

"Where do we get such men?" 
From people like Robert Gilbert, Senior.

And people like yourself for that matter, Erik.

Joyjoyfromnj said...

Praying for the Gilbert family, with tears in my eyes. Asking the Heavenly Father to wrap His arms around this human father and his daughter and to give them His peace and strength to endure this trial. And thanking Him for granting us such men to protect us.

Jerry said...

Semper Fi, and God Bless

Rick Schwag said...

Root, root root for the home team, if they don't win it's a shame..