So what did Karen Perez do? Did she dishonor her son's service by protesting his mission and the war? Did she start a hair-brained, hippie flashback sit-in on the President's doorstep?
"Dear Mom, It's really your decision to march if you want to or not. You are the one who has to decide if what we are doing out here is right or not. ... People may not agree with the things we are ordered to do. I would like to address those people by telling them that terrorism is not only a threat to us as Americans, but to many other innocent people in the world.
"What type of country would we be if we didn't defend the rights and freedoms of others, not because they're Americans, but how about just because they're human?
"Yet as Americans we're afraid of losing our soldiers to defend our security. I can only speak for myself when I say that my life is an easy expense to ensure that my family and friends can live in peace.
"I strongly believe in what we are doing and wish you were here to see for yourselves the honor and privilege that American soldiers aboard this ship are feeling, knowing that we are going to be a part of something so strong and so meaningful to the safety of our loved ones.
"I ask for your courage as Americans to be strong for us; I ask for your understanding in what we believe is right. I ask for your support in what we are sworn to do: defend our country and the life of all.
"I am proud to be here. I will be coming home, but not until I know that it's going to be safe for all Americans and for everyone I love."
Retired from the US Air Force after more than 20 years of service. Now working as a contractor for various government agencies.