The ultimate sacrifice

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Today’s Chronicle has the story of some local families who have lost loved ones in Iraq:

“It’s tough,” said Barbara Rozier, of Katy, whose son, Jonathan, was slain in Iraq 16 months ago, making this the family’s second holiday season without him. Rozier, a 25-year-old Army lieutenant, died in a Baghdad ambush on July 19, 2003, leaving behind his wife, Jessica, and 2-year-old son, Justin.

“There are times when it’s almost like a fresh wound, where things will trigger it. You just feel that emptiness and that ache all over again. And then it heals up and you move on,” she said.

For her Cinco Ranch family, a key to coping with the grief has been maintaining routines and traditions and doing charitable works to honor their hero, Rozier said.

Saturday, family members continued their private initiative to help troops still in the fray. Led by the soldier’s sister, Elizabeth, they used several thousand dollars in donations to buy long-distance calling cards for sailors and soldiers in the war zone and planned to put them in the mail. They’ve shipped several hundred of the phone cards already this year.

Local blogger Chris Elam knows the Rozier family, and on his blog shared some thoughts:

We both knew Elizabeth Rozier from home school activities, and Liz and I both went on to attend Texas A&M. Her older brother Jonathan, was also a home-schooled young man, a corps member at Texas A&M, and graduated the same year I did. Last year, we heard with sadness, that he had been killed during a rocket-propelled grenade attack in Iraq. He left behind a young wife, and a 9-month old son.

It is a very sad story, but the confidence and hope the Rozier’s have, is that they will see Jonathan again in Paradise. In the meanwhile, they are obviously staying active in supporting the military, and Elizabeth has had many opportunities to become active in GOP politics, and from what I hear, has a bright future in our party. This past August, she was the first at-large alternate (Governor Perry’s) of the Texas Delegation to the GOP Convention in NYC.

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Anne Linehan is a co-founder of blogHOUSTON.