Sunday, January 03, 2010

A Letter Of Grief And Hope From Kandahar: "Their Spirit Will Live On Forever."

What follows is a letter from our dear friend Ehsanullah Ehsan, director of the Afghan-Canadian Community Centre in Kandahar, "a school that owes its existence to the sacrifices of the Canadian people." I've passed on the letter directly to Canadian Forces officials in Ottawa and to the editor of the Calgary Herald, so that it might make its way to the bereaved families.

To the Highest Esteemed Families of Ms. Michelle Lang, Sgts. George Miok, Kirk Taylor, Cpl. Zachery McCormack, and Pte. Garrett Chidley,

I am writing to extend my deepest sympathies to you, the families of Ms. Michelle Lang, Sgts. George Miok, Kirk Taylor, Cpl. Zachery McCormack, and Pte. Garrett Chidley, and the government and the great people of Canada, on behalf of the Afghan men, women children who have been given the chance to live a peaceful and prosperous life by virtue of the ultimate sacrifices paid by the Canadian men and women in uniform serving in Afghanistan. As an Afghan who has had the privilege of aiding in the reconstruction of Afghanistan, I was deeply saddened and outraged to hear that the soul of such heroic figures had departed this world, but deeply believe that their spirit will live on forever in the legacy of honor, dignity and integrity that they left for the Afghan people, the Canadians and the world at large. May you know that your grief is deeply shared by all of us. With every such tragic loss, we bleed in our hearts.

We have the greatest respect and appreciation for the ultimate sacrifices made by these heroes, and will always remember their brave and noble efforts. We admire their sincere and caring services for the love of humanity, the love of children and the love of the Afghan people, as well as for the noble purpose of ending the scourge of terrorism, oppression, extremism and human rights violations in Afghanistan and around the world. As the Director of the Afghan-Canadian Community Center in Kandahar, a school that owes its existence to the sacrifices of the Canadian people, the Canadian heroes, I will do my utmost to ensure that our students honour Ms. Michelle Lang, Sgts. George Miok, Kirk Taylor, Cpl. Zachery McCormack, and Pte. Garrett Chidley's legacy and that our teachers and students dedicate themselves to a more peaceful and prosperous future for us all.

Please let me know whether there is anything I can do to help during this difficult time. You are in our thoughts and prayers. We will continue to pray for their eternal soul, and that you receive the strength and courage you require in your time of need. God is with you and may you receive His blessings of peace, solace and prosperity.

Sincerely, Ehsanullah Ehsan, Director, Afghan-Canadian Community Center.

Coincidentally, Patrick White of the Globe and Mail wrote a fine report about Ehsanullah and his tremendous work in Kandahar that appeared in the newspaper only the day before Michelle and the soldiers were killed. Patrick's moving remembrance of Michelle is here. More about Ehsanullah and his earlier Christmas letter here.

"Prior to her leaving, she asked me what I wanted to read, and I said I wanted to read about the good stuff that they're doing over there," Michael Louie, Michelle's fiance, recalled.

I hope this letter helps, Michael.

1 Comments:

Blogger David M said...

The Thunder Run has linked to this post in the blog post From the Front: 01/04/2010 News and Personal dispatches from the front and the home front.

11:18 AM  

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