Memorial Day: Worth a thousand words

Arlington National Cemetery, Memorial Day 2007.

The story behind it, from photographer John Moore via

‘One Memorial Day weekend, in 2007, I took my family to Arlington,’ photographer John Moore told, talking about this almost unbearable picture. ‘I went to photograph, but also just to visit, having covered so much war over the years. Mary McHugh had lost her fiancé, Sergeant Jimmy Regan, in February 2007 to a roadside bomb while he was in Iraq. She and I spoke about Jimmy, and about some of the places in Iraq he and I had both been, although we’d never met.”

Photo by John Moore / Getty Images

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  1. Joe Cleary says:


    A heartbreaking and piercing photo that clearly speaks without words the heavy cost so many have born for us.

    May we be both truly appreciate and be always worthy of their sacrifice,

  2. pagansister says:

    What a heart wrenching picture. This truly brings to the forefront what happens in war not only to to many soldiers as well as those who wait at home for their return.

  3. Don from NH says:

    If we hadn’t been lied to by the great pro lifer Bush….she would not have been there along with all the others that died in that needless war.

    Thank you to all our service men and women who go when called. Lets hope in the future its wont be needless.

  4. Don: American soldiers have died both under republican and democrats. Your comments is out of line.

  5. I always thought the photographer should’ve been punched in the face for intruding on what should’ve been a private moment.

  6. pagansister says:

    dymphna: I think it is obvious that the photographer had permission to publish the picture, as her name and that of her fallen soldier is under the above article. it also said the photographer had spoked with her. IMO, and I may be wrong, he would not have published it without her permission.

  7. My goodness. This picture speaks volumes. As a very proud wife of a United States Army Soldier I can olny imagine the loss Ms.McHugh must have felt. We all know the reality of war when our loved ones are called up to go to war. It is very intense for the the family and most certainly the soldier. I just hope and pray that throughout the years she had the faith and the strength to move on with her life. but, to also carry the memory of Sgt Regan with her in her heart. May God bless you. As for the photographer, I dont think the manner in which he took this picture was offensive or intrusive by no means. In reading the article, it appears to me that he may have asked permission to photographer her private moment. Appeared to me he was ver respectful towards her feelings.

  8. Rudy Junior says:


    The United States of America is founded as a nation that believes in the freedom of speech.

    Soldiers have died to defend this right. Unfortunately, they have also died for less lofty ideals.

    Don’s aren’t hateful, they are his opinion. Get over it. Not everyone has your opinion. Thank goodness for that.

    Rudy, you are out of line.

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