Last Words

Conflict is international. Aggression begets aggression, and the global inability to create a peaceful paradigm, one driven by diplomacy and compassion, ensures the continuation of violence. Arlington National Cemetery commemorates the lives of veterans; they rest in peace so that we may live in it. But the cemetery pays the same amount of reverence to those whose courage was identified, but not their remains, through the Tomb of the Unknowns.

The trees listed here play the same role of remembering victims who worked towards peace, or who lived with it, until fear and violence ended their lives through an act of terrorism. Honoring their lives by assigning their memories to trees celebrates life for all. It is for this reason that expanding Arlington Cemetery’s grounds is not necessary. Visitors go to remember the lives of those who served, not dwell in their death. Ultimately, the sacrifice of those we honor must be the cause for optimism, not its effect.

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