So often over the past month people have dwelled on how Pokey died. Yes he died in combat serving this country. But in doing so they have forgotten how he lived.
Those who knew Pokey have only to take the time to remember who he was. His smile, his laughter, his bizarre sense of humor. But also that he was sensitive caring person who would stop and help the elderly man load his groceries. Who would make the bigger kids stop picking on the littler ones. He had a work ethic that few his age had. When there was a job to be done he pitched in and worked hard till it was done. Pokey hated being idle. He had to be doing something. either goofing off with his friends or volunteering to take on some chore just so he could be doing something. Some would have described him as hyperactive but he wasn't he was just a doer. He had to be doing something. I think it was because he was quite intelligent. Pokey savored life. He valued it in a way not many his age do. Oh he had moments or sadness like we all do but he never allowed those moments to consume him.
When I think of Pokey or others who have given their lives in service of this country I try to think of how they lived. I like to hear the stories of how these young men and women lived their lives. What made them smile, what made them mad. Who they were and how they touched the lives of people around them.
It is a wonderful thing to know their names and remember thier sacrfice. But it is a better thing to remember how they lived and let that inspire you.
Pokey lived with honor, courage, and hunger for knowledge and laughter.