As the Stars and Strips waved overhead, on a bright cloudless morning in the Southwest Arizona desert, a somber and reverent ceremony honoring fallen Soldiers and civilians was held on the historic Army post of Fort Huachuca.
A tribute and testament to the sacrifices made since the birth of our great nation, the United States Army's Network Enterprise Technology Command paid homage to 102 fallen Signal brethren during a rededication ceremony of the Army's Signal Cove of Remembrance, May 23, in front of the command's headquarters.
"The memorial Cove, commissioned by former NETCOM Commanding General, LTG Carroll Pollett, in 2006, was initially dedicated by LTG Susan Lawrence, on December 10th, 2008," said Maj. Gen. John Baker, NETCOM Commanding General. "On that day 56 signal Soldiers who had fallen since Sept. 11, 2001, were honored and their names and photographs were enshrined in the Cove.
"As we approach the ten-year anniversary of that initial dedication, the fallen memorialized in the Cove now number 102, as members of our Signal community continue to selflessly serve this country on battlefields and conflict zones around the globe."
The rich tapestry of symbolism found throughout the Cove reflects the command's dedication to honoring the fallen. These symbols include the Signal Torch with eternal flame signifying the everlasting commitment the Army's signal forces have to this Nation.
A bronze, pedestal-mounted, American eagle denoting the high esteem in which the Army holds the 102 fallen men and women who embodied the ideals of this nation.
A quarter-sized replica Liberty Bell emblematic of the challenges this great Nation faced, and continues to face.
And overseeing the Cove is an American Flag, flown over the Pentagon; over the battlefronts of Southwest Asia; over the Fort Gordon, Ga. signal regimental home; and over the NETCOM headquarters, signifying the global reach and impact of the fallen signal member's sacrifice as they were ever 'Watchful for the Country.'
"When our formal ceremony ends we must meet the challenge inherent in the epitaph on the north wall of the memorial, 'Never Forget Our Quiet Fallen Warriors,'" said Baker. "These Warriors need not be quiet -- their sacrifice speaks to us and we, through our acts of remembrance, represent and speak for them. With this annual memorial ceremony, and the placement of the wreath, I make a pledge to you today … we will never forget!"
The day's ceremony concluded with the playing of taps, as a lone bugler played the solemn notes while all those in attendance stood with respect and reverence to those who paid the ultimate price for the freedom's enjoyed by all.