Category Archives: #thankyouaaron

Aaron Fairbairn July 4th 10 Years Ago

It was on Independence Day, ten years ago, when we received that fatal knock on the door. On the 4th of July, there stood a Sergeant and Chaplain in full dress uniforms on our front porch, with sad news about our 20-year-old son’s being killed in an attack, early that morning in Paktika, Afghanistan.

PFC Aaron Eli Fairbairn 20 Aberdeen Washington Died July 4 2009 Paktika Afghanistan

Though our family could not survive the loss of young Aaron, the memory of his heroism lives on, as having served our country honorably, while surrendering his all by answering the call.

Jeff EJ Jaycie Tabitha saying goodbye to Aaron Eli Fairbairn RIP

The 4th of July used to be the most joyful celebration for our family, and now it has turned into that pivotal day honoring Aaron’s sacrifice (as well as all the sacrifices, great and small) of all who participated in ensuring we can celebrate this weekend.

PFC Aaron E Fairbairn carried to his final resting place flag casket

Enthusiastically enjoy this weekend’s events, and if you care to, take a moment to give a nod to all who have made this possible.

I honor all who have helped make our American Independence Day what it is today.

-David M Masters







Remembering PFC Aaron Fairbairn 4th of July

Aaron Fairbairn and so many others have given all they possibly could on our behalf. It is the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice over the years that enable us to celebrate enthusiastically on Independence Day, the 4th of July.

PFC Aaron Fairbairn Homecoming Bowerman Field Hoquiam Washington July 2009

Aaron so loved celebrating the 4th of July with our family in an annual reunion usually in Seaside, Oregon, a coastal town, not far from our Aberdeen, Washington hometown. Aaron thoroughly enjoyed the excitement of it all, especially firing off his own fireworks and viewing the local fireworks spectacle of Seaside’s Independence Day celebrations.

It seems somewhat a twist of fate, that he would be killed by military fireworks while in combat in Paktika, Afghanistan during a surprise attack on his base of the 4th of July.

The day, when we would have been celebrating with Aaron in proxy (as we all had spoken to him the evening of July 3rd) on this day, Aaron’s mother, sister and brother were on a flight to Dover, to await Aaron’s return to U.S. soil.

I was there, when he took the oath to serve, even pledged to die, if necessary, for our country. To tell you the truth, I never thought he would have to pay that price for his service, or that Aaron’s life would end like this, at 20-years-old, on his first tour.

Today, and on every 4th of July now, we still gather (now as separate families) celebrating the 4th of July with a much more somber respect and attitude than before Aaron’s passing… And I know that we are not alone.

Aberdeen VFW Post 224 honors Grays Harbor KIA in Aberdeen Founders Day Parade July 2 2016 Aaron Fairbairn a

There are so many families and friends of those who have answered the call and given their all. We honor them, their sacrifice, and the loss of the ones left behind to honor the memories of their service, without which we would not enjoy the lives that we live.

A huge “Thank You,” and a slow salute for all the fallen and the friends and families with whom we share this honor.



Hero’s welcome for fallen soldier

By Keith Eldridge Published: Jul 14, 2009 at 4:54 PM PDT

HOQUIAM, Wash. — Pfc. Aaron Fairbairn left home to join the Army a year and a half ago. On Tuesday the body of the 20-year-old soldier was flown home and welcomed with full honors.
Fairbairn was serving in Afghanistan with the 4th Brigade Combat Team when a Taliban suicide bomber drove a truck full of explosives into his military camp on July 4.

His family had just talked with him the day before the attack after a week without contact because phones in the military base were down.

“You try not to think the worst, but it does come out and then we heard from him, it was great,” said Fairbairn’s brother, Beau Beck. “And 12 hours later we get the news. It’s just unbelievable.”

At Bowerman Field in Hoquiam on Tuesday, Patriot Guard Riders stood at attention as the flag-draped casket was lowered from a private jet provided by the military.

Fairbairn’s family and friends were there, along with people who’d never met the young solder but wanted to show their support.

“You can see the support,” Beck said. “He was a soldier and that’s a lot of it, but he has a lot of friends around here, and it was a great turnout to honor him.”

Beck was able to accompany his brother’s body on the flight back from Dover Air Force Base in Delaware.

“That was the biggest honor for me, as his brother, to fly back and bring him back to his hometown.”

John Harpe was among the motorcycle riders who took part in the ceremony honoring Fairbairn at the request of the soldier’s family.

“I want to let the military service know that the folks back home support them in every aspect of their lives, and we’ll be here in their darkest hour as well,” he said.

A procession of motorcycles, fire engines and private vehicles escorted Fairbairn’s body home from the airport.

“The community came out and showed their respect for a soldier, a brother a friend,” Beck said.

Fairbairn joined the Army after he graduated from Aberdeen High School, and a public memorial will be held there at 11 a.m. on Saturday.





Memorial Day May 25, 2015

Nothing like a three-day weekend to remind you of all that you have; a chance to load up the kids and head for the beach, gather with family and friends & fire up the barbeque, laugh, frolic and enjoy discount sales at your favorite stores.

But this weekend is Memorial Day weekend. It is the day that is set aside to honor those who have given their lives for us to enjoy our everyday lives, here in the United States of America.

Memorial Day remember the fallen heroes thankyouaaron

This business of protecting our American freedoms can be an ugly endeavor and thank God for the men and women who volunteer to take on the responsibility of standing in the gap on our behalf. They all take the same oath; some pay the ultimate price, not coming home in a seat but in a flag-draped box.

This Memorial Day remember the fallen heroes thankyouaaron

Regardless of political affiliation or personal belief, these men and women who have given their all on our behalf are true American heroes; the performance of their duties must be respected and their sacrifice is to be honored.

Memorial Day May 25 2015

Of the millions of American families who get together this holiday in joyous celebration, many with an empty place-setting experience a more somber reverance, recognizing that their number is one less and Monday is the day that we decorate their graves.

Memorial Day Missing Man Table we remember

Yes, we all should celebrate, party and have a good time; but also remember to take a moment to peacefully pause in remembrance of those who have given all that they possibly could. After all, this is the cause for celebrating this holday.

Memorial Day Remembbrance Table

Love to all who serve and continue to stand in the gap, as we honor our fallen heroes this Memorial Day 2015.


Veterans Day 2014

It is all I can do to express the deepest most heart-felt gratitude for all who have answered the call in service to our country.


There may be no higher honor than to serve unreservedly, to put yourself in harm’s way on the behalf of your fellow citizens. Truly each and very sone of you gave some but some have given all.


To our men and women in uniform… past, present and future God bless you… and thank you.

Memorial Day 2014

On Memorial Day we remember the fallen. Those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.

Remember-the-Fallen-Memorial-Day-2014-Aaron-FairbairnThere are so many who have given some and so many who have given all in the name of God and country.

On July 4th, 2009, PFC Aaron Fairbairn joined the ranks of the heroes who have he ultimate price on our behalf, so that we can live in a land that is free.

I am not the only person who would have gladly traded places with Aaron in that moment. Aaron was so loved and had so much to give that many would have rather taken his place so that the world would know how much he had to give to other privileged to share in his presence. But his journey was that of the honored hero by his choice and was his destiny.

There is not a more honorable challenge to any human who is willing to lay down his life for the benefit of his friends, and Aaron and so many others have accepted this charge that we remember on this day and are so grateful for their sacrifice.

In this way they have made such a significant impact on our lives, that is easy for us to overlook while we are content to work, play and relax in our neighborhoods and homes as others – even now – have elected to accept the difficult details for us, knowing that any breath they take might be their last.

This day, I join with all by brethren who have also lost a loved one in service to God and country, because the sacrifice is not only paid by the hero, but also evermore by each and everyone who love and cared for the… and are reminded of their sacrifice daily.

But on this day, we all stand hand-in-hand agreeing together regardless of our differences in gratitude of all who have fallen for us.

We honor, love and are grateful for each and every one, this Memorial Day (if not every day of) 2014. God bless all who have gone on to fight the fight from beyond, and all those who still feel the price of their heroism.

Twitter Hashtag #thankyouaaron Honors Fallen Soldier

Only July 4th amidst the celebration of Independence Day the hastag #thankyouaaron rocketed up the Twitter charts in the first social media permanent memorial of a fallen soldier. PFC Aaron Fairbairn was killed in an attack on his outpost in Paktika, Afghanistan.

PFC-Aaron-Fairbairn-OfficialFollowing the departure of Aaron’s mother, Shelley Masters, brother, Beau Beck and sister, Sascha Davidson via flight to Dover, Delaware to await the arrival of Aaron’s body on U.S. soil, David Masters, Fairbairn’s stepfater, tweeted about the events as they unfolded in realtime.

According to David, “In my family’s absence, I was running ‘Aaron Central,’ phoning everyone I could to report the loss of Aaron. Being the 4th of July, I was unable to contact anyone in person as everyone was out celebrating. All I could do was leave answering machine messages and voicemails.

Frustrated, grieving and feeling so isolated and alone, I reached out to my friends via Twitter… who were also not monitoring their Twitter feeds at the time… but I did get one reply from a stranger that said simply, ‘Sorry for your loss.’

It was so good to have some human interaction as my family was in-flight across the USA, and that simple message touched my heart, and I fell apart. Realizing the reality of what had taken place on this day.

The result was seeing Aaron’s sacrifice honored by so many twitter followers that the hashtag #thankyouaaron reached number one on the Twitter charts.

That evening and in the days that followed, Aaron was featured in major media, newspapers, radio, news and television programs.”

Tim-Madding-Aaron-Fairbairn-David-Masters-Ethan-MaddingAdam Koeppe says, “I may not remember where I was when Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” was number one on the charts, but I will always remember seeing “thank you Aaron” becoming the top Twitter topic. If there had been any doubt of the internet’s ability to bring people together for a cause they believe in, the appreciation of the service of Aaron Fairbairn should eliminate this misconception completely.

‘Thank you Aaron’ was a moment those involved will never forget. In an era where there are few true heroes, the Twitterverse chose to honor the life of a young man. Without the filtering and bias of the mainstream media, the world is showing it’s true heart and soul through social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook.”

Augie Ray, Director of Social Media for a Fortune 100 financial service commpany shares his personal experience, “I had just come home from a Fourth of July picnic. My mood was happy and
carefree–I’d enjoyed the company of friends, ate well, and lit the fuses on more than my share of fireworks. Then I saw a tweet from someone I follow and it changed my mood instantaneously. Aaron’s sacrifice, his father’s anguished tweets, and the concern of those who are complete strangers to Aaron and David put the day and its meaning into perspective.”,2933,530123,00.html