President Ronald Reagan once said about remembering fallen veterans, “the dead had spoken more eloquently for themselves, than the living ever could.”
America’s most recent wars — Iraq and Afghanistan — started more than a decade ago. Iraq may have ended, but Afghanistan still rages on today.
“More than 60,000 of our fellow Americans still serve far from home in Afghanistan — they’re still going out on patrol, still living in spartan forward operating bases, still risking their lives to carry out their mission,” said President Barack Obama today.
There have been 4,486 killed in action in Iraq and 2,134 killed in action in Afghanistan.
Here, Business Insider remembers a few of those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.
Cpl. Michael Wiles, of Willingboro, N.J., presents a flag to Famata Kar, mother of fellow U.S. Marine and best friend, Lance Cpl. Abraham Tarwoe, at a memorial service in Flehla, Liberia, May 17, 2012.
2nd Lt. Mark C. Gelina, Sgt. Chad M. Allen, Cpl. Benjamin S. Rosales and Lance Cpl. Edward M. Garvin gave their lives while fighting the insurgency in Iraq in 2006.
Lance Cpl. Robert J. Ryan mourns the loss of Lance Cpl. Dustin L. Canham, who died in a training accident in Djibouti in 2008.
Members of the rifle detail perform a 3-volley salute during 2nd Battalion, 3rd Marine Regiment's memorial service in 2009 for Lance Cpl. James Argentine, Lance Cpl. Travis Babine, Lance Cpl. Joshua Bernard, Petty Officer 3rd Class Anthony Garcia, Cpl. Christian GuzmanRivera, Sgt. Jay Hoskins, Cpl. Matthew Lembke, Lance Cpl. John Malone, Lance Cpl. Alfonso Ochoa Jr., and Lance Cpl. Joshua Whittle.
Service members assigned to Special Operations Task Force West stand in formation during a memorial marking the anniversary of the death of Petty Officer 2nd Class Tyler Trahan, an explosive ordnance disposal technician. Trahan was killed in action April 30, 2009, in Al Anbar Province, Iraq.
Lt. Col. Fridrik Fridriksson kneels with Alyssa Estrada before a pair of boots and a rifle here, June 28, during a memorial ceremony honouring her husband Petty Officer 3rd Class Kyler L. Estrada, who died in a Djibouti training accident, Feb. 14, 2012.
Marines kneel beside the battlefield cross to pay their final respects to Sgt. Bradley Atwell during a memorial ceremony, Sept. 20, 2012.
U.S. soldiers salute a memorial for Spc. Brian M. Anderson, with the 1st Battalion, 87th Infantry Regiment, 10th Mountain Division, in Kunduz province, Afghanistan, June 15, 2010.
Lance Cpl. John J. Malone's dog tags catch the sun as they hang from his Fallen Marine Monument. Malone died conducting combat operations in Afghanistan in 2009.
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