Last Memorial Day, my family and I were in a cemetery in Utah. I like cemeteries–they tend to be clean and quiet, and one can find clues about scores of great lives hinted at on the markers these thousands of strangers left behind.
On that particular weekend, all the markers that indicated that the deceased was a veteran were decorated with small flags, which made that visit even better.
But I stopped cold at this site and didn’t know what to feel besides sorrow. I had to take this picture.
The poor Krueger couple had three children, all of whom died in infancy. I can’t imagine a heartbreak like that.
And looking around that or any other cemetery, who knows how many more tragedies lie there, silently sleeping after a lifetime of toil and travail?
And those tragedies are part of lives that must have also had amazing triumphs, moments of sublime transcendence, all completely unknown to me, one visitor at random many years later.
Things like this keep me humble and grateful. It’s good to wrestle with the infinite size and scope of human life.
But let’s say a prayer for the lost Kruegers of the world. There is room in our hearts to have sympathy for the dead.