Lawton_Friday was a day of remembrance at Fort Sill. It's the Third Anniversary of "Rock Hard Day" - a day set aside by the soldiers of Fort Sill's Second Battalion, Fifth Field Artillery Regiment to honor and remember soldiers killed in war.
Soldiers and their families gathered at the 2-5 Field Artillery Memorial to remember the brave men who gave their lives in Operation Iraqi Freedom. It was a very emotional day for the soldiers of the 2-5. They pride themselves on a rich history - being a part of the oldest regiment in the Army. And, they want to make sure their legacy lives on - especially through those who made the ultimate sacrifice.
Jennifer Moss is the widow of Sergeant Keelan Moss who was killed in the line of duty four years ago today. "I just came to pay tribute to my husband who passed away in Iraq," she says. Jennifer says it's important for people to remember and honor those who went before us - especially our military. "I think people tend to forget what these soldiers have done and the sacrifices they've made and the families that are left behind."
That's what Friday's ceremony was all about. The names of each of the eight 2-5 soldiers fallen in battle was read in a last roll call and helmets and dog tags were placed on inverted rifles marking the fallen men.
Flowers were laid at the 2-5 Field Artillery Memorial on which has all eight soldiers names are etched. "It keeps their memory alive for what they stood for, their bravery, their sacrifice and how we are; we don't want their sacrifices to be in vain," said Lieutenant Colonel John Watson.
Watson, commander of the 2-5 at Fort Sill says it's important for the young soldiers to remember the sacrifices made by the battalion. "There are a couple of things that a unit does, no matter what unit they are. And one of them is remember your fallen. And to us, it's just something that we have an obligation to do, so we do it," he said.
"It's just a wonderful tribute and I think that they owe it to them, because they deserve it," Watson said. And, they have a lot to be proud of. The 2-5 is the first in the country. Colonel Watson says as long as he is commander of the 2-5, these heroes will be remembered.