I participated in a reading of the Iraq War dead today. It was an important experience for me to partake in. Most of the people participating were opponents of the Iraq War. I started off as a supporter. In some sense, then, these deaths lie on my head. So while I'm normally loathe to join in such public political acts (this may sound surprising, but it's true--I don't do much political activity beyond my writing), I felt I had an obligation to come out and acknowledge those who made the ultimate sacrifice for a misguided policy that I joined in supporting.
Obviously, after awhile the names began to bleed together, but a few did stand out to me. Lori Piestewa, who died in the same firefight where Jessica Lynch was captured. There was the young Army Captain who died on Christmas Eve. One man in his early fifties who had "Sr." after his name, so I knew he had kids. And the last name I read, ironically enough, died on my birthday.
I thank them for their sacrifice, and I mourn for their loss.