Musician Champions Recognition of Soldiers' Sacrifice

By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, April 24, 2007 - A Cleveland-based musician and songwriter is hoping one of his newest works will raise the country's collective awareness of the sacrifices its servicemembers are making every day.

"Our Sacrifice" offers musical support to servicemembers and their families, Mark Reis said. "After I wrote the song, I started looking at the lyrics and the meaning behind it. I knew that it was intended to support (servicemembers) and their families and what they're going through."

"Our Sacrifice" was recorded in Nashville with Frank Camp and Nicole Cuglewski singing vocals. For a year, Reis said, he didn't really do anything with the song. And though the song's intent was clear, its true purpose came to light only recently.

Working in the entertainment business has Reis in and out of airports frequently. During a two-hour layover in Dallas, he took advantage of the beautiful weather and wandered outside.

"There was this woman and she was standing there and she was thanking this young soldier who was on his way to Iraq," he said.

But that woman's actions were the exception to the norm, he said he discovered during his two hours in Dallas.

"I watched soldiers coming by, and they were just being passed by by businessmen and women ... and nobody's actually thanking them," Reis said. "That kind of struck me as odd."

Reis said he's trying, through "Our Sacrifice" and its accompanying video, to raise the country's awareness of how important it is for Americans to support their servicemembers regardless of their views on the war.

"That's pretty much what the real goal is, to remind people that we have a patriotic duty to support and honor our brave servicemen and women and their families," Reis said. "They're making sacrifices -- some of them are making the ultimate sacrifices -- to defend us (and) protect our freedom."

He said he hopes that eventually "Our Sacrifice" will be "embraced as the national theme for all Americans to show their support for troops and their families."

To help make that happen, he has turned to major corporations in hopes of getting one to come on board and use the song and video in its advertisement campaign. This, he said, will raise awareness to the next level.

Editor's Note: To find out about more individuals, groups and organizations that are helping support the troops, visit America Supports You directly connects military members to the support of the America people and offers a tool to the general public in their quest to find meaningful ways to support the military community.

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