Friends of Colwyn: 

I hope you are well this Middle of July. I certainly love our Country and this time of the year I am always reminded of the freedoms I enjoy. As I research economic indicators and financial performance, I am reminded that none of that would be possible with out a system to support it, without laws and protections and order and rights. I come from a long line of those who have served our Country and I am thankful and proud of their service and example. 

I read again this month the letter that Abraham Lincoln wrote to Mrs. Bixby when he learned that she had 5 sons that had been killed in the civil war. His sentiment has been memorialized in stone in many places including the punch bowl near Honolulu Hawaii.  

Here is the letter: 

Executive Mansion,

Washington, Nov. 21, 1864. 

Dear Madam, 

I have been shown in the files of the War Department a statement of the Adjutant General of Massachusetts that you are the mother of five sons who have died gloriously on the field of battle. 

I feel how weak and fruitless must be any words of mine which should attempt to beguile you from the grief of a loss so overwhelming. But I cannot refrain from tendering to you the consolation that may be found in the thanks of the Republic they died to save. 

I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of Freedom. 

Yours, very sincerely and respectfully,

A. Lincoln.

I love the last line of this letter! I am thankful for the Country that we live in and for the freedoms that I enjoy. They allow me to work and live and pursue happiness as I wish, and I receive these freedoms at no cost to me, they were handed to me on a silver platter and I have done nothing to earn them or deserve them. Yet I enjoy them at the cost of the many who gave their lives for my freedom. I am thankful for those who have served and lived and died to create and protect these freedoms.  

Have a great summer!