Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Andrew Olmsted Donations

There was some debate about the details and method of it, so I held off on posting about it, but apparently the appropriate place to pay your respects to blogger Maj. Andrew Olmsted, killed in action in Iraq, is here:

A member of Andy Olmsted's family has just written me to say that if people want to do something in honor of him, they can send donations to a fund that has been set up for the four children of CPT Thomas Casey, who served under Andy and was killed while trying to help him. The address is here:

Capt. Thomas Casey Children’s fund
P.O. Box 1306
Chester, CA 96020

Thanks so much.

The post also contains a list of blogs that wrote about, or linked to, Olmsted's moving final message to the world. It's as long as a phone book (and only partially complete, despite yeoman work by Hilzoy) and all the more impressive because there was no effort to gin up a blogstorm and no reward, traffic-wise or othewise, for writing on this. I clicked through the lists the other day (and, perhaps impertinently, wrote about the one dud I found on it), and read more sincere eloquence and more sincere speechless mourning that I think I've ever seen online anywhere.

What came to mind after reading all that was a couplet from an old poem from a time whose poetry now seems false and stilted to modern readers, but not to me. It asks a question a year after a terrible battle:

How sleep the brave, who sink to rest
By all their contry's wishes blessed!