We stand by you

Eine Geste sagt mehr als 1000 Worte


Als Geste der Solidarität mit den USA nach den Anschlägen am 11. September 2001,

zeigte der Zerstörer Lütjens Flagge auf eine ganz besondere Art.

Die Besatzung der Lütjens erwies dem Zerstörer USS Winston Churchill eine Front mit beiden Nationalflaggen auf Halbmast

und einem beschriebenen Laken, auf dem geschrieben stand:



Ich hänge hier eine E-Mail eines amerikanischen Oberfähnrichs in ihrem Originalwortlaut an.

Der Soldat war zum Zeitpunkt der Anschläge auf einem Zerstörer der Arleigh Burke-Klasse, der DDG 81 Winston Churchill eingesetzt.



The following is an E-mail from a young ensign aboard USS Winston Churchill (DDG-81) to his father. Note that "Manning the Rail" is a shipboard ceremony reserved for only high ranking dignitaries, such as Heads of State. Here's the letter:

Dear Dad, We are still at sea. The remainder of our port visits have all been canceled. We have spent every day since the attacks going back and forth within imaginary boxes drawn in the ocean, standing high-security watches, and trying to make the best of it. We have seen the articles and the photographs, and they are sickening. Being isolated, I don't think we appreciate the full scope of what is happening back home, but we are definitely feeling the effects. About two hours ago, we were hailed by a German Navy destroyer, Lütjens, requesting permission to pass close by our port side. Strange, since we're in the middle of an empty ocean, but the captain acquiesced and we prepared to render them honors from our bridgewing. As they were making their approach, our conning officer used binoculars and announced that Lütjens was flying not the German, but the American flag. As she came alongside us, we saw the American flag flying half-mast and her entire crew topside standing at silent, rigid attention in their dress uniforms. They had made a sign that was displayed on her side that read "We Stand By You." There was not a dry eye on the bridge as they stayed alongside us for a few minutes and saluted. It was the most powerful thing I have seen in my life. The German Navy did an incredible thing for this crew, and it has truly been the highest point in the days since the attacks. It's amazing to think that only half-century ago things were quite different. After Lütjens pulled away, the Officer of the Deck, who had been planning to get out later this year, turned to me and said, "I'm staying Navy." I'll write you when I know more about when I'll be home, but this is it for now. Love you guys.




Von nun an heißt es:

Zerstörer Lütjens  D 185... Gone, but not forgotten...

...denn Tradition pflegen bedeutet nicht, Asche aufzubewahren,
sondern Glut am Glühen zu halten