Patriotic speech, poem

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, November 8, 2005

The following excerpt is from a speech presented by Beth Chapman at the January state meeting of the VFW.

It has been released, by request, for Veteran’s Day in honor of the men and women of the U.S. military.

You &045; as members of our military epitomize courage and embody the spirit and the freedom of America because you have worn the uniform, fought the battles, won the wars and earned the right for all of our freedoms.

I salute you today and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am not worthy to speak before a single one of you, just honored.

Last night I sat in my den and thought about many of you &045; even though I do not know your names or your faces or your places of origin, I know that you are true Americans. I know that you have served our country, and I know that I and all Americans are indebted to you for your sacrifices and the sacrifices of your families.

I dare not ask you about your patriotism because you have lived it.

I do not ask you about your pride because I see it in the way you walk and hear it in the way you talk. I see it in the reflection of your eyes. You reflect the spirit and freedom of America that I feel but have never had to fight for.

It is in closing that I will share a poem I wrote for you late last night:

There will be no battlefields in Heaven,

No wounds, sadness or strife,

No darkness of death or shots fired,

Only peace and health and life.

There will be no foxholes in Heaven,

For they will all disappear,

All nations will bow before God,

All conflicts will be made clear.

There will be no wars in Heaven,

For fighting no longer will be needed,

No angry bombs bursting,

The enemy will have conceded.

There will be no war rooms in Heaven,

Because all the strategies will be done,

All the battles will be over,

All the victories will be won.

There will be no barracks in Heaven,

Just mansions on streets of pure gold,

All the wars will be fought,

All the war stories told.

There will be no bugle’s cry,

No taps or reveille,

No day or night, no wounded or dead,

Just life eternally.

All battle stations will be empty,

No one left on the front line,

All the ships will be in port,

All the jets and tanks resigned.

All services: Army, Navy,

Coast Guard and Marines,

Will join together in unity,

A mighty force never before seen.

All troops will be called up,

But not to a foreign land,

But to stand before God’s thrown,

And receive their final command.

And it will not be enlistments or commissions,

To put them in harm’s way,

But the just reward of serving,

Will be given to them on judgment day!

Thank you to all who have served our great country, and may God bless you here on earth and greatly reward you in Heaven!

Beth Chapman serves as Alabama State Auditor and is a resident of North Shelby County. She can be reached by e-mail at