The power of a grieving mother reigns supreme.
The mother of the first Navy SEAL killed in the Iraq War demanded an apology from Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin Dempsey after a remark he made that the fall of the city Ramadi to Islamic State militants would not be “symbolic in any way,” and on Monday she got just that.
“I’ve read your letter, and I do apologize if I’ve added to your grief,” Dempsey said to Gold Star mom Debbie Lee, according to Fox News.
Lee, whose son Marc was killed fighting in Ramadi in 2006, wrote an open letter to Dempsey after he made the flippant remark.
(The SEAL was posthumously awarded the Silver Star, the Bronze Star with Valor and the Purple Heart.)
“You, sir, owe an apology to the families whose loved ones’ blood was shed in Ramadi,” she said in the letter.
Dempsey sent Lee a personal note and was expected to call her on Tuesday, Fox News reported.
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“Marc and so many others died fighting to provide a better future for Iraq,” he wrote. “He and those with whom he served did all that their nation asked. They won their fight, and nothing will ever diminish their accomplishments nor the honor in which we hold their service.
“We are in a different fight now, with a different enemy, and with a different relationship with the Government of Iraq. They must determine the path and pace of this fight. That’s what I intended to convey.”
Lee accepted the apology — with some reservations.
“I accept it,” she told Fox News. “Though I’m going to be watching and I won’t hesitate to call him out again if I hear something that’s not right.”
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