Thursday, April 24, 2008
The Angel of Marye's Heights
On our Spring Break trip to Mount Vernon, we stopped off in Fredericksburg at the site of the Civil War battle that took place there in December 1862. A short walk down the "sunken road" is this monument to Richard Rowland Kirkland of South Carolina, who left the Confederate wall to give water to wounded enemy soldiers caught between the lines. For this he gained the title, "The Angel of Marye's Heights." Kirkland himself would later fall in battle.
I was struck by the memorial to this young man and the reminder that even in war there can be acts of civility, mercy, and kindness. One might also draw a dim analogy to the one who gave up himself to rescue his enemies.