Written By Gold Star Wife Alexandra McClintock
“The shot heard round the world.” It’s funny to think this was penned originally by Emerson referencing the Revolutionary war when it seems it could be used to describe what took place to me a little over one year ago today, January 5th 2016. Two men walked inside our white picket fence, up on to our porch, and sent my dogs in a frenzy. I came out of the kitchen to see two berets in the top window of our front door. One was the deep red of an airborne soldier with a cross indicating a chaplain. The other was green like the one my husband Matthew wore, the one I have in the dash of our car, the one my son Declan wears around our house.
They rang the doorbell, they knocked on the wide old door, and they knew I saw them but somehow I couldn’t move. The 100 year old hardwoods beneath my feet had been refinished by hand in the dream house Matt and I had just bought to raise our son in. Our son, who was sleeping on the couch peacefully in his car-seat, after just being brought inside only feet from the front door, our son who I would do anything to protect from the shot heard round our world. Those beautiful hardwood floors we had loved so much were no longer enough to hold me up while everything came crashing down around us and they swallowed me whole.