Remembering their service

May 25, 2012
Memorial Day tribute - Why the security industry should honor fallen soldiers

Memorial Day has a special place for the security industry. Not only are the ranks of the security industry populated by former soliders and officers, but the business side of this industry often relies on technology that came out of defense research. As much as our industry "takes" from the military (hiring some very good people, leveraging military-developed technologies, patterning corporate security responses after military procedures), I think it's important that we reflect on the price that has been paid for our freedom as a nation and that we reflect on the losses of brave men and women in military service.

On that note, I received an email earlier this week from John French, the CEO of Cygnus, which publishes not only the security publications of SecurityInfoWatch, STE magazine, SD&I and Locksmith Ledger, but also a number of publications in the public safety space for law enforcement, firefighters, paramedics and other first responders. He shared a story of his recent visit to the Candlelight Vigil that is held as part of National Police Week in Washington, D.C. It's a somber event, recognizing line of duty deaths, and as he put it, it showed "the character and strength of our American soldiers."

John wrote:

"I recently had the privilege of attending National Police Week’s Candlelight Vigil in Washington, DC. The annual event serves as its cornerstone, memorializing the individuals who put the well-being of others ahead of their own, losing their life as a result.

"As you can imagine, the ceremony was extremely moving as the names of the fallen were read aloud. This year’s program was observed alongside the theme – 'In Memory of Many; In Honor of All,' and began with the playing of the Star Spangled Banner. Before it began, I noticed two soldiers. One of them was wounded and had lost his foot so he was using a crutch to balance himself. As the National Anthem began to play, the wounded soldier dropped his crutch, and leaned his right elbow on his comrade’s shoulder in order to salute the American Flag. That soldier’s unyielding display of respect is the same kind of reverence that we owe him and all the men and women who have lost their lives in pursuit of our freedom.

"It’s easy to forget the extraordinary lengths strangers have and will go to protect us. Remembering their sacrifice seems so small compared to the price they paid for their service to our country and to our communities."

It was well put. As you shut the doors for the weekend on your security command centers, guard shacks, technology sales offices, or wherever it is you work, I hope you take the time to recall the ultimate sacrifice that was given: "Some gave all."