Specialist Four Jeremy B. Bird

 

A Father's Memory Of His Son

 

Twenty-nine years ago I was as wild as anyone could be

I met a wonderful woman and asked her to marry me

All our friends and family were at the wedding, they wished their very best

A new and special love I found, this woman’s patience I would sometimes test

 

Nine months after the vows, there came into this world a bundle of joy

It was a glorious day; she had given birth to a beautiful brown-eyed boy

He was full of spirit, and difficult at times, he was a lot of fun

One of my greatest treasures; I loved him dearly for he was my first son

 

I watched him grow and he developed into a young man so wild and free

He was like no other, one of God’s greatest gifts, we called him Jeremy

Growing tall and lean with a desire to be with the best

The way he played football and wrestled, he stood out among the rest

 

Hunting elk, deer, pheasant and taking one of the largest black bear

To be there to see him stalk and shoot, these memories I will always share

The greatest thing about him was how he treated his friends with respect

They loved him like a brother, for there was no fear that they could detect

 

Graduation day came early for him in the year of ninety one

On the honor roll four years for being the best that he was among

Most valuable football player and wrestler, he wouldn’t be denied anything less

After graduation he gave up his Blazer and friends, then joined the Army to be with the best

 

I asked him not to go; he said with firmness in his voice, “that he must do this for himself”

He was always G.I. Joe as a kid; his personal life would be put on a shelf

Training was hard with many difficulties, running and marching, never time to sit

He would become an Airborne Ranger, by their Creed they were never allowed to quit

 

Passing all of the tests except for the toughest he never had

To be with the best of the best he needed the Ranger Tab

With a weary body and hypothermia setting in, he still made it to the mountain top

In a motivational letter he told how he would get the Tab if it killed him, the Tab he finally got

 

I came home on that fateful day after work, I was tired and all worn out

In drove the Chief of Police, a priest and a sergeant, I wondered what this was about

His mother was the first to greet them, and then turned to me with tears in her eyes

For Jeremy had made the ultimate sacrifice and they told us how he dies

 

It was in a helicopter crash over the Great Salt Lake, it went down in a fiery flame

He had volunteered for this mission, letting no one else take it for he wouldn’t be ashamed

Sergeants, officers, enlisted men, the best of the best were together on that fateful day

All the rest of his Ranger Buddies were on shore, but all they could do was pray

 

I only wanted my Son back, and after several days he came home with God’s will

I asked Jeremy’s wrestling coach where he should rest; he said, “Bury him on a hill”

Twenty-two 1st Battalion Rangers came from Hunter Base, to tell Jeremy’s story

With a special viewing for his Ranger Buddies, we then played the song, Blaze of Glory

 

There was such beauty at the ceremony, a blanket of white snow, the Rangers were standing proud

With prayers and farewells, a twenty-one gun salute, then taps that touched the hearts in the crowd

His mother laid a yellow rose on the casket, as an eerie guest of wind came on down

As the rose blew off, a Ranger out of nowhere caught it before it touched the ground

 

I believe that gust of wind was taking his soul back to heaven, where he came from

Jeremy was only here for a short while; God’s gift to me, my beloved son

Two weeks after he had gone, I had a vision, it was Jeremy and he said to me

“Get on with your life, I am at peace, you’ve grieved enough, just let it be”

 

While in training he had told me to buy a place in Idaho, following his dream, I would start a new life

It has been very hard for this old cowboy, for his mother is no longer my wife

Climbing mountains, snowmobile, riding horses, hunting lions, and sometimes living on the edge

The danger and excitement that he would have liked, almost got me killed, falling off a rugged ledge

 

When I’m out doing the things he wanted me to do, his spirit is always at my side

As I travel throughout the country, there isn’t much this cowboy hasn’t tried

For Jeremy is the wind blowing in the pines or a rooster pheasant flying through the air

The bugle of a bull elk, or the baying of the hounds on the trail of a black bear

 

This hunter and Ranger was of me, the son I loved so much and will always treasure

He was and still is, someone we will always miss, more than anyone could measure

They say he stood tall, was a good friend, a man that walked with purpose

The wrestler, the son, the friend, the hero, his spirit lives on in every one of us

 

As the days go by and time passes, his spirit keeps me moving on

I will think of him often and the memory of where he is, in the great beyond

Someday this old cowboy will ride that horse alone, to that mountaintop on high

It will be a lonely ride, but it will be worth it, to see my Son, that Ranger in the Sky

 

His Dad

 

 

Submitted by Byron Bird, Father of Specialist Four Jeremy B. Bird

HHC, 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment

Killed in Training, Helicopter Crash

Great Salt Lake, Utah

October 29, 1992