August 20, 2011 11:31:00 PM
My name is Patrick Dean Swartz. My mother''s name is Deborah J. Swartz, my father Robert D. Swartz, and my brother Matthew A. Swartz.
I was born in Amory in 1986, and lived in Columbus my entire life. I graduated high school from CHS in 2004 and graduated MSU in 2010. Soon afterwards, I was accepted into the United States Marine Corps'' Officer Candidate School program and I attended the incredibly difficult 10-week program last October in Quantico, VA. The day I was commissioned a second lieutenant was one of the proudest days of my entire life; not only had I really accomplished something and proven that people from a small town in Mississippi could still do good things, but also because I had finally taken the step to defend my family, my home, and the good people that call themselves Americans.
I am currently living in 29 Palms, Calif. with my loving wife, Kathryn E. Swartz, and I wanted to let my home know that I want them to truly think about something. As the 10th Anniversary of Sept. 11 inches closer, just take that special day to honor someone, to help someone, or to simply think about the state of the world.
There are great people working for this country. There are great people defending this country. There are great people helping, teaching, and healing the people of this country. When that day comes around, remember why we are what we are; remember that there is true evil in this world, and that we, as Americans, must always protect ourselves against it. Take a moment to think about the men and women that die for us every single day overseas and at home. Think about them, not just when it''s convenient.
I am a United States Marine. I am from Columbus, Miss., and I am privileged to live in the United States. Above all else, I am honored to serve daily with the people I serve with, and for the people of my home.
I wish people who have moved away would send updates back to their cities more often. People back home deserve to see how their community''s people have affected other places.
Second lieutenant, United States Marine Corps