Memorial Day gives us an opportunity to remember those who have died while serving in the U.S. military. We’ve put together a collection of stories from veterans, service members, and their loved ones to help us reflect on their many contributions and sacrifices. Listen to their voices below.

A StoryCorps conversation is the least expensive and most important gift you can give to someone you can’t be with face-to-face. This Memorial Day, honor a veteran, service member, or military family member in your life using StoryCorps Connect and record their story. Learn more at StoryCorpsConnect.org.

The Last Viewing

In 2005, Allen Hoe’s oldest son, Nainoa, was killed in action in Iraq. Not long after on Memorial Day, he had a chance encounter with a stranger that brought them both unforeseen comfort.
Read the full transcript here.

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"Farming...is about life over death rather than death over life."
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How Sheep Farming Helped an Injured Army Vet Overcome PTSD

Mickey Willenbring, a combat veteran of the Iraq War, reflects on the military, sheep, and how the two intertwined on her journey back home.
Read the full transcript here.

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"He was talking about this feeling that he had that he was going to die."
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In Memory of Diego Rincon

George Rincon and Yolanda Reyes, remember their son, Army Private First Class Diego Rincon, who received U.S. citizenship after he was killed by a suicide bomber in Iraq in 2003.
Read the full transcript here.

 

1st Squad, 3rd Platoon

In 2005, Marine Lance Corporal Travis Williams and his squad went on a rescue mission in Barwanah, Iraq. He was the only member of his team to make it back home.
Read the full transcript here.

The Nature of War

Specialist Justin Cliburn was deployed to Iraq in 2005. While serving in Baghdad, he formed an unlikely friendship with Ali and Ahmed, two boys who lived near his compound.
Read the full transcript here.

 

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"He was proud to be the person to challenge that law."
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In Memory of Tech. Sgt. Leonard Matlovich

Jeff Dupre remembers his friend Air Force Tech. Sgt. Leonard Matlovich, who appeared on a 1975 cover of Time with the headline, “I Am a Homosexual.”
Read the full transcript here.

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“Because she was Asian, they wouldn’t accept her. Mom said she didn’t care; she enlisted anyway.”
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Remembering One Tough Veteran: Lieutenant Susan Ahn Cuddy

Flip and Christine Cuddy remember their mother, Susan Ahn Cuddy, a Navy gunnery officer who served in World War II.
Read the full transcript here.

Pearl Harbor, Tattooed on Your Soul

On December 7, 1941, over two thousand people died when Japanese fighter planes attacked Pearl Harbor. On that day, Frank Curre, then a teenager, was serving aboard the U.S.S. Tennessee.
Read the full transcript here.

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