Submitted by: Carroll R. Michaud

Category: Poetry

In Memory of this Nation’s Fallen Warriors

Did you hear the sad news today?
A great American patriot and Veteran Warrior has passed away
Called by the Supreme Commander over all.
Today he has made his final roll call.

Come fellow Vets let us reverently bow and pray
For our valiant comrade, who has fallen this day.
We’ll drape his casket with a banner of beautiful hues,
Those glorious American colors: red, white and blue.

That star spangled banner he gallantly fought to defend,
Unyielding and undaunted, he fought to win.
He fought bravely and he passed the battle test.
Now the Supreme Commander grants him, “eternal rest”.

With dignity and honor, we’ll commit his body to the ground,
The bugler will sound “Taps” and we’ll fire the volley rounds.
The final military honors we’ll render somberly and ever so sadly;
“Ole Glory” we’ll solemnly precisely fold and reverently give to his family.

Each Memorial Day we will recall our fallen comrades’ names,
And attest that their selfless sacrifices were not in vain;
For this lasting legacy they gave to all generations;
“It’s honorable to respect our flag and to defend our great nation.”

So close ranks fellow warriors, for our ranks are thinning.
We must keep on fighting and keep on winning.
With pride and honor we’ll march and stand tall,
And we’ll proudly - proudly - salute “Ole Glory”
til we too make our final roll call.

Be At Ease Fallen Comrades; Rest In Peace

About the author:

How Carroll R. Michaud' cane to write "The Final Roll Call - An Inspiration for a Poem" In the fall of 1998 I retired as a professional engineer after having worked 20 years for Fluor Daniel, an engineering & construction company. My wife and I were in the process of selling our home in Sugarland, Texas and were relocating to my wife’s family home in Shreveport, Louisiana. One day during this transition I was returning to Sugarland after having taken a car load of household goods to Shreveport. I was driving alone and was listening to a radio interview of Tom Brokaw about the book he had just published entitled, “The Greatest Generation.” It was a very interesting and absorbing interview. Mr. Brokaw noted that 1,500 World War II veterans were dying every day. This pained me deeply. Consequently, I said to myself, “You haven’t done a thing to honor our WW II veterans and you need to correct that fault before more veterans pass on.” I was a month shy of my ninth birthday when the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor. My oldest brother was drafted into the army and was in the tail-end of the Okinawa campaign. He was a MP guarding Japanese prisoners. I hadn’t even thanked my deceased brother for the service he had rendered during WW II. My conscience bothered me for not having honored our WW II veterans for the great sacrifices they made. I decided I was going to correct this neglect. So, I thought, “If Tom Brokaw can write a book, I can at least write a poem; a poem to honor the 1,500 WW II veterans dying each and every day. So as I drove, I began to compose the poem ”Final Roll Call.” I had a writing pad on the seat next to me. The words played out in my head as I drove and every once in a while I would pick up the writing pad and put my thoughts to paper. The drive from Shreveport to Sugarland is about four and a half hours. By the time I drove into my driveway in Sugarland, I pretty much had the poem roughed out as I had envisioned it. Once I sat down at my desk with my computer, I arranged the verses and changed some words. And as they say, “The rest is history.” My hope is that this poem will find its way to all men and women who have donned this nation’s uniform and gone into harm’s way. I want them to know that, regardless of the war era in which they served, I truly appreciate the service they rendered to our great nation. I thank them with all my heart and I pray God's richest blessing for them and their families.