The family released a statement...
"Mass round-ups and detentions of innocent civilians, torture and abuse of prisoners and detainees, America’s honor and prestige at the lowest point ever, and investigations that whitewash the president’s men and blame it all on the enlisted personnel. Thus the obscene spectacle of the grieving families at funerals forced by the president’s dishonesty to defend the honor of their dead even as they mourn: Small wonder that the president, desperately attempting to hide behind a façade of rigid religiosity that glorifies war and false patriotism that exalts the very evils it claims to despise, never attends the funerals of those who have died in the line of duty. How could he?"
by Michael Gillespie
05/13/05 "MMN" - - If you've been paying attention to the exclusively local media coverage of the funerals of the mostly young American servicemen and security contractors killed in Iraq and Afghanistan, you will have noticed that the families are increasingly finding it necessary to make public statements declaring the goodness and decency of their loved ones who have given their lives in the line of duty or in the service of the corporations that provide manpower to meet the Pentagon's still growing demand for private security contractors.
"He was noble and always carried himself with honor. He was kind and gentle and always gave all he could without hesitation. He was a loving husband and father. [He] believed in his mission in Iraq. He was a strong man and stood up for what he knew was right."
"[He] died serving his country and protecting our freedom. [He was] a loving husband and father, a devoted son and brother. He was the best of the best our country had to offer."
And, in the case of a security contractor, "[He was] a true patriot, a beloved brother, son and friend. . . . It was [his] deep sense of patriotism and his abiding Christian faith that led him to work in Iraq. He wanted to go where good people needed help. He will be dearly missed.