I do not know your name nor have I seen your face. The picture I have of you in my head is a human in camouflage, holding a rifle (or was that a machine gun?), with a sash of bullets, satchels of ammunition, and a jungle backpack with contents I do not know of.
You have been in a battlefield multiple times, heard of gunshots countless of times, confronted death like it was nothing, dodged bullets and bombs like an action star, aimed and shot, and killed your foes. You have seen your comrade bleed and die. You have seen corpses toss like junks. The sight was gruesome. It was a sight you would never get used seeing.
You hid and starved, welled tears of trepidation, made soundless screams, felt helpless and wretched, and still, withstood.
You had an oath you swore to live by. That was to never quit a battle, to fight and die with honor and valor. Probably, you were afraid, too. Afraid to kill. To bleed. To die. But you had to act all tough even in pain. You had to fire even in fear.
Amidst the gunfire, bloodshed, and chaos, you struggled to cheat death. Not to free yourself from the agony of dying, but to defeat terror with your comrades and avenge the fallen ones, and to return home safely.
You are a patriot, a selfless warrior. You are a hero to millions of us. You endanger your life to keep us safe. You defy death to defend our land. You leave your family so we could be with ours.
You could have been someone unarmed, someone who holds not guns but tools or pens, someone who wears not combat shoes but trendy sneakers, someone who worries about NBA games and not the country, someone who could enjoy raising an argument and reading memes on the banning of unlimited rice, someone who freely goes on dates and trips, someone who peacefully sleeps at night.
It was not easy becoming one, yet you chose to be a soldier. You paved the road less taken. You became what most did not want to become. You did what most did not want to do. You went to where most did not want to go.
I have nothing to offer but my sincerest gratitude, prayers for your safety and victory, tears of empathy, and appreciation of your sacrifices.
You deserve more than that. So you must not die. You would not want your dad or mom or wife or child bawl over your coffin. That would be more than tragic.
Do not die.