The last weekend in May, Memorial Day, is not just a day to celebrate the unofficial beginning of summer barbecues and pool parties, but it’s a special day to commemorate the heroic deeds of all our U.S. Military soldiers who died in service.
We’ve made a list of our Top 10 Songs That Honor Our Fallen Soldiers for this Memorial Day to help us remember all of those who have given their lives to keep America the land of the free and the home of the brave.
10. “The Soldier Song”- Babyface
Babyface’s song tells a story about an 18-year-old man who goes to war and loses his life too young:
In another day or so/He’s be one year older/God bless his soul/Barely 18 years old/When he became a soldier/God bless/his soul/It’s not like he didn’t know/The way all he had to cope/But he never made it home
9. “Last Soldier”-Pearl Jam
Pearl Jam’s touching song tells a story about a young married man going into service and how–no matter what happens–the soldier will be thinking of his wife’s face and their child together:
Look me in the eye/No matter what’s in front of me/It’s your face that I’ll see/And the future of our young one/And this is what fuels me/There’s no time for laughing/There’s no time to cry/Soon I will be leaving/Look me in the eye
8. “When You Are A Soldier”-Steven Curtis Chapman
Unless you have served yourself, it’s hard to know what goes on while you are a soldier. Steven Curtis Chapman says he identifies with and supports all of our brave men and women:
When you are a soldier I will be your shield/I will go with you into the battlefield/And when the arrows start to fly/Take my hand and hold on tight/I will be your shield, ’cause I know how it feels/When you are a soldier
7. “Soldier”-Neil Young
Neil Young’s simple, sweet folk song sounds like a prayer for a the beautiful soul of a soldier:
Soldier, your eyes/they shine like the sun/I wonder why/Soldier, your eyes/shine like the sun/I wonder why.
6. “Heaven Was Needing A Hero”-Jo Dee Messina
Jo Dee Messina’s tear-jerking pop song about losing someone and how heaven needed another hero proves that just because something is pop sounding, doesn’t make it superficial:
I guess heaven was needing a hero/Somebody just like you/Brave enough to stand up/For what you believe/And follow it through/When I try to make it make sense in my mind/The only conclusion I come to/Is heaven was needing a hero/Like you
5. “Fallen Soldier”- Beverly Knight]
A beautiful R&B song, Beverly Knight’s song talks about how she may not have known some of our fallen soldiers, but how, in dying, the belong to her–and all of us:
You are my fallen soldier/One of our many martyrs/I would have loved to know you/Still you’re my fallen soldier
Asking one of the most important questions a person could ponder, Bryan Adams wants to know if you are brave enough to serve our country–and possibly lose your life:
Can you lay your life down, so a stranger can live?/Can you take what you need, but take less than you give?/Could you close every day, without the glory and fame?/Could you hold your head high, when no one knows your name?/That’s how legends are made, at least that’s what they say.
3. “Letters From Home”-John Michael Montgomery
John Michael Montgomery’s country song “Letters From Home” isn’t exactly a song about a soldier who died in combat, but it is a touching portrayal of what goes on during war–and how much our soldiers miss being home:
I hold it up and show my buddies,/Like we ain’t scared and our boots ain’t muddy, but no one laughs,/’Cause there ain’t nothing funny when a soldier cries/An’ I just wipe me eyes/I fold it up an’ put it in my shirt/Pick up my gun an’ get back to work/An’ it keeps me driving me on/Waiting on letters from home.
2. “Just A Dream”- Carrie Underwood
Not only is the song for Carrie Underwood’s fictional lament to her deceased husband heart-breaking, the video tells an incredible story of a poor young girl and her brave soldier:
The preacher man said let us bow our heads and pray/Lord please lift his soul, and heal this hurt/Then the congregation all stood up and sang the saddest song that she ever heard/Then they handed her a folded up flag/And she held on to all she had left of him/Oh, and what could have been/And then the guns rang one last shot/And it felt like a bullet in her heart
1. “Soldier’s Last Letter”- Merle Haggard
An old-style country song, Merle Haggard’s an amazing feat of sonic storytelling that probably sums up the feelings of many mothers of lost soldiers:
I’m writing this down in a trench mom, don’t scold if it isn’t so neat, the way that you did/when I was a kid and I’d come home with mud on my feet/The captain just gave us our orders, and mom we will carry them through, and I’ll finish this letter the first chance I get/but for now I’ll just say I love you/Then the mothers old hands began to tremble, and she fought against tears in her eyes/But they came unashamed for there was no name/and she knew that her soldier had died.