There was a constant stream of visitors to the Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery on Memorial Day, May 30, 2011.
People solemnly paid their respects to lost loved ones, quietly pulling over along one of the narrow drives through seemingly countless white headstones.
Some sought the shade of tall foliaged trees and the bench beneath it. Perhaps they became reflective, wondering why, why not, what if. Neat rows of markers give them a sense of peace, but no answers. So many lives. So many graves. A story told, a story forever lost.
One visitor tells me there are 121,000 graves at Fort Sam. They stand gleaming in the sun, streaming over the rolling hills, dear American flags pushed into the earth in front of each one.
Most days it is a still place, but not on Memorial Day. We especially remember our soldiers and their dearest sacrifice on this national holiday. So, so, so many white headstones. And next to them...an empty field.