The mother of a fallen U.S. soldier who is holding a roadside peace vigil near President Bush's ranch shares the same grief as relatives mourning the, yet their views about the war differ.
"I'm angry. I want the troops home," Cindy Sheehan, 48, of Vacaville, Calif., who staged a protest that she vowed on Sunday to continue until she can personally ask Bush: "Why did you kill my son? What did my son die for?"
Jim Boskovitch, father of slain Cpl. Jeffery Boskovitch, 25, of North Royalton, Ohio, is supporting the U.S. military action in Iraq.
"I firmly believe, and I would echo my son's feeling on this, it is very, very important for our country to remain steadfast and complete the mission that they set out to accomplish," Boskovitch told ABC on Sunday.
Boskovitch is among several families mourning Ohio Marines who suffered heavy losses in three attacks starting July 28, when two were killed in a gun battle. On Monday, five were killed in an ambush. Nine were killed Wednesday when an armored vehicle was hit by a roadside bomb.
Rosemary Palmer, the mother of Lance Cpl. Edward Schroeder, 23, another Ohio Marine killed in Iraq, sided more with Sheehan. If the United States continues its current course in Iraq, the death toll of U.S. troops, now at more than 1,820, will only grow, she told ABC.
"We either have to have more people there to do the job and better equipment, or we have to leave — one or the other," she said.
Boskovitch said his son, Jeff, "felt extremely, extremely strongly about the Iraqi people and our government deciding to go over there."
"His commander in chief needed him to be there, as well as those fellow soldiers, to help those people, help that country to be able to stand on its own and to liberate those people," Boskovitch told ABC.
Sheehan was among grieving military families who met with Bush in June 2004 at Fort Lewis, near Seattle, Wash. That was just two months after her son, Casey, was killed in Sadr City, Iraq, on April 4, 2004.
Since then, she said, various government and independent commission reports have disputed the Bush administration's claims that Saddam Hussein had mass-killing chemical and biological weapons — a main justification for the March 2003 invasion.
"I was still in shock then," Sheehan said in a telephone interview.
"All of those reports prove my son died needlessly," said Sheehan. "This proved that every reason George Bush gave us for going to war was wrong."
Sheehan, who formed a group called Gold Star Families For Peace and has spoken out against the war across the nation, talked for about 45 minutes on Saturday with Steve Hadley, Bush's national security adviser, and Joe Hagin, deputy White House chief of staff, who went out to hear her concerns.
Appreciative of their attention, yet undaunted, Sheehan said she planned to continue her protest along the road during Bush's stay through the end of the month.
"If he doesn't come out and talk to me in Crawford, I'll follow him to D.C.," she said. "I'll camp on his lawn in D.C. until he has the courtesy and the integrity and the compassion to talk to somebody whose life he has ruined."