One thing thats harder then being a soldier, is to have one as your spouse, especially the ones on field duty doing tours of the God forsaken places in the middle east. The fear of the unthinkable and the prolonging to see your better half return safe and sound is just too significant.
Their are general practices where soldiers write back to their family informing them about their condition, so in some manner hope creeps through the darkness. But for some it comes back as an embodiment of deeper emotions.
One such experience happened with Emma Weaver, who lost her husband by an IED on his second tour of Afghanistan. Lieutenant Todd Weaver had left her and their nine-month-old daughter Kiley behind without a goodbye.
But as destiny will have it, after laying her beloved soldier husband to rest when she opened his laptop, she was overcome with emotions.
She might have not seen him for the last time, but staring at her were two word documents titled “Dear Emma” and “Dear Kiley”. The wise soldier had written heartfelt letters to the two ladies in his life, in the event of his death.
Its only human imagination how Mrs Weaver was able to open the letters.
“Well if you are reading this, I guess I did not make it home and therefore, I was not able to remind you again of how much I love you,” U.S. Army, 1st Lieutenant, Weaver wrote. He further urged his wife to be strong for their daughter who was just 9 months old then. “Remind her about her Daddy and tell her that I loved her more than anything else in the world,” he wrote.
Here are the actual letters:
Well if you are reading this, I guess I did not make it home and therefore, I was not able to remind you again of how much I love you.
I love you so much baby and I will always love you. Although I may not be here right now, take comfort in the fact that I am watching over you right now. I am not gone and I will always be with you in spirit. I know this time must be hard for you but I also know how strong you are.
Never forget that God knew what was best for us before we were even born. Take comfort in that. This happened for a reason. Although you may not believe it now, you will one day. I want you to know just how important you are to me. I could not ask for a more caring, beautiful and loving wife. The memories that we have shared over the last few years have been the best of my life. Although it may seem like my life was cut short, I lived a life that most can only dream of. I married the perfect woman. I have a beautiful daughter that amazed me every day.
I even had two great dogs – at least most of the time. I couldn’t ask for anything more. If you feel sad, just think back to the memories that we shared. Look at our daughter and how beautiful she is. Be strong for her. Remind her about her Daddy and tell her that I loved her more than anything else in the world. Her birth was the best day of my life and she was the best thing that ever happened to me.
Her smile and laughter represent all that is good and beautiful in this world. Tell her that Daddy is in heaven now and will watch over her and protect her every minute of every day. I love you Emma. But never be afraid to do what you need to do to be happy. It is so important that you continue to find happiness in your life. Although you may think this is impossible right now, have faith. Much better times are coming. You and Kiley have a wonderful life ahead of you and I am so happy to have shared some of it with you.
I love you.
Your loving Husband,
Dear Kiley, My Sweetie:
Although you may not remember me, I want you to know how very much your Daddy loves you. I left for Afghanistan when you were 9 months old. Leaving you was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. You are so very special to me sweetie – you are truly a gift from God. The best day of my life was the day you were born. Every time I saw you smile my heart would just melt. You were my sweetie – my life was not complete until you were born.
I am so sorry I will not be able to see you grow up. But remember, your Daddy is not gone. I am in heaven now smiling down on you every day. You are so very lucky to have such a wonderful Mom to take care of you. Make sure you are good for her and help her out whenever you can. Always remember to say your prayers at night and be thankful for all your many blessings.
Never forget how important and special you are to so many people. We love you so very much. When you get older and start school, do your best and try to learn as much as you can about the world you live in. Always be nice and caring to others and you will discover that the world will be nice to you. But when things aren’t going your way, never forget that God knows what is best for you and everything will work out in the end.
You have such a bright and beautiful future ahead of you. Have fun. Enjoy it. And remember, your Daddy will always be proud of you and will always love you. You are and will always be my sweetie.
With very much love,
Todd Wrote : “Do your best at school, and try to learn as much as you can about the world you live in. ‘You have such a bright and beautiful future ahead of you. Have fun. Enjoy it. And remember, your Daddy will always be proud of you and will always love you.”
Mrs Weaver wrote on her blog that the words were very hard to read but they bought some peace and solace to her. ‘I couldn’t imagine being at war and seeing what he did everyday and then having the courage to write goodbye letters to the one’s you love. He was so strong,’ she wrote.
Mrs Weaver remembers how Todd had stepped away to spend some one to one time with her and manifested that special father daughter bond
“What he whispered to her I may never know. And as we left that day I thought to myself “it’s only a year,”‘ she wrote. ‘Courage to tackle each day with the same spirit he would have,’ she said. ‘I can’t be bitter for the way Kiley and I’s lives have changed, it’s not my call in the end.”
She further states “It is a hard life now. Can I handle it? I certainly can. Would I have chosen it? No.” She went onto to say that even though her daughter may not remember her father when she is older, he will always be a prominent figure in her life. “She will know her Dada is always here, always protecting her, and is always in her heart,”
As Todd wrote in his own words, “Never forget that God knew what was best for us before we were even born. Take comfort in that. This happened for a reason. Although you may not believe it now, you will one day”.
Todd’s mom Jeanne Harris Weaver wrote, “He touched so many people with his zest for life; their lives better just by knowing him. He lived with conviction and dignity. He knew friendship and he knew love of family, wife, and child. He knew disappointment, sadness, sorrow.
He knew faith and love for God, understanding that our life here on earth leads to eternal life. His life was complete. He has Eternal Light.”
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