Today's hike was on the serene Kamananui Valley Trail. An easy trek filled with Hawaiian history for a few miles, and then plunges into the land that time forgot. I'm not even sure exactly how far I made it. I didn't make it to the summit of the Koolau Range. The trail up the valley wall was simply too wet and slippery. Being solo, I decided not to temp fate. But it was a good, muddy, sweaty hike nonetheless.
I was all set in who I was dedicating this hike to, on this Memorial Day weekend.....but halfway through, as I was recalling memories of my friend Jim Doster...I realized that in the space of time since his death, I had forgotten one of my former Soldiers who had also lost his life. Not while he was in my unit, but in his next. I had forgotten Darrell Griffin. True, we weren't as close as Jim and I had been, Darrell being a PFC/SPC and I his Platoon Sergeant.....but I felt immediately shitty. Darrell reminded me a lot of myself at his stage of his career...and there is absolutely no doubt that he would have gone on to surpass anything I had done by the time I retired. He was already on that kind of track in the Army. So with today's hike, I remember two Fallen Warriors, and their families...and I hope you will as well.
Jim Doster was exactly like me in so many ways. I've expressed some of it before, and don't really feel like expanding on it again. Maybe later tonight, with some SMS and some privacy.
I previously wrote about SFC James Doster here and here.
I previously wrote about SSG Darrell Griffin, Jr here.
I'll post a few pictures of today's hike, but sitting at Starbucks, I didn't bring my USB cable...and don't feel like e-mailing them to myself right now. They're not the point of this blog entry anyway.