Truthdig honors Mary Tillman this week, on behalf of all the mothers whose children have been lost or are risking their lives at war. Her brave search for the truth about the fate of her son and others sacrificed in the Iraq or Afghanistan war underscores the true significance of Mother’s Day.

Mary Tillman’s April 24 speech before the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform about the loss of her son, Pat, in Afghanistan three years ago and the U.S. military’s subsequent attempts to cover up and exploit the story of his death is certainly one of the most powerful testimonials in recent American history. “This is an ugly war,” she said. ” … We shouldn’t be allowed to have smokescreens thrown in our face.” Speaking out as she did can’t rectify her family’s loss, but it did demonstrate her own patriotism and honored the sacrifice Pat made — along with the sacrifices made every day by U.S. troops and Iraqis.

More links:

Watch Mary Tillman’s testimony below:

Click here to read about the origins of Mother’s Day.

Read this Washington Post article about the cover-up.

Check out two of Truthdig Editor Robert Scheer’s columns about the Tillman case here and here.

Kevin Tillman, Pat’s brother and a veteran of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, wrote an arresting article commemorating Pat’s birthday in 2006.

The Nation made its own tribute to Pat’s heroism in this story.

Learn more about Pat from the San Francisco Chronicle here.

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