Honoring the Life and Sacrifice of North Carolina's Mason Vanderwork
March 21, 2013
I rise to honor the life of Marine Corps veteran Lance Corporal Mason Vanderwork of Hickory, North Carolina.
After multiple tours of duty defending liberty abroad, this twenty-one-year-old hero, gave his last full measure of devotion this week in service to our country.
We can never adequately thank him or his loved ones for all they have given, nor can most fully grasp the weight of freedom's burden on young service members and their families. But in spite of our incomprehension, our hearts go out to Lance Corporal Vanderwork's wife Taylor, his mother Melissa, and his sister Katelyn.
What I have learned of Mason is striking. Before graduating from Hickory's St. Stephen's high school where he was regarded for his work ethic on the field and off, He knew he wanted to join the ranks of America's Marine Corps. Days after graduating, that's exactly what he did.
Friend and neighbors recall his kindness and the high caliber of his friendship. They know him as a good man with drive to become an even better man.
How sad we are for this great loss.
In this time of tragedy, the country is sobered by the breadth of Mason Vanderwork's sacrifice and mourns alongside the people of Hickory.
May we remember his loved ones in our thoughts and prayers and commit them to the care of Almighty God.