Today we celebrate Veterans Day. To many in today’s environment, this day is just another “paid holiday”. It seems fitting to me that some of today’s gratitude should be focused on our veterans.
With that being said, today I would like each of you to remember with sincerest gratitude our veterans. These are the men and women who now serve, and have served, and many who have died to protect our freedom, our rights, our safety, and our lives by serving in our armed forces. They consciously choose to put aside their family, their lives, and to put duty, honor, and country first.
They are a very special breed of individuals who feel a deep longing and desire to help make a difference, in not only our country, but the world. During our wars, thousands left the comfort of home and family, at the first opportunity, to join the ranks and stand shoulder to shoulder in unity of mind and spirit - freedom and liberty. Some did not have that choice, and were drafted. Nevertheless each one of these brave and selfless men and women take the defense of this country and our freedoms very seriously.
Though often invisible to many of us, today roughly one percent of our population chooses to put their lives on the line every day for us. Imagine that! Only once percent who choose to defend something each and every one of us gets to experience and enjoy - FREEDOM. That's what makes them so special. I think that number should be higher, but sadly it's not. They put everything aside, with great personal sacrifice, to keep our country safe, to protect each of us from harm, and safeguard our freedoms and liberties. They are selfless in their service, and serve us all only for one reason - the greater good - for our country, the freedoms we enjoy, and to protect each one of us.
It is with a deep sense of honor and pride that they serve and wear their respective service’s uniform with honor and distinction. My family, and most likely yours too, have had several family members through the generations who have defended our freedoms. We have had four generations in our family that have served our country with honor. Personally, we have been a military family for the last two of these four generations.
I actually felt sad this morning that it was raining today because we could not proudly display our flag.
"The bravest are surely those who have the clearest vision of what is before them, glory and danger alike, and yet notwithstanding, go out to meet it." - Thucydides
All of them make the ultimate sacrifice, some in the loss of their lives, but all suffer the loss of individaul choice and freedom to be with their family, loss of their daily individual life through their daily service to their country. Hundreds of thousands have been separated from loved ones - both here and abroad in service to their country.
I personally have had many friends and neighbors, who are not members of the military, tell me that they could never imagine being without their spouse for more than a few days or a week - some even for one day. Family birthday? Anniversary? Birth of a new baby? Sorry - the needs of the country come first.
Those who are lucky enough to return home walk through their country as virtual "ghosts" with very little recognition or respect. Many have been spat upon, attacked and battered, and endured the cruelest of verbal, and in many cases, physical abuse just because they have unselfishly defended our country, and the very rights and freedoms of their attackers. They come to the sad realization that despite what they do, day in and day out, the life that they fantasized about while deployed serving in combat - the one thing that kept them going and fighting for their very life - was sadly just a daydream; that in reality, the life they left - the very one they thought about each and every day, and their future will most likely never be the same again.
Don't you think it's time for each and every one of us as decent, honorable human beings to take matters into our own hands? We can't just sit back and be complacent. We must be proactive, and set the example for our friends and neighbors to follow. Each and every one of us should be a "front line champion" for them just as they have been for us!
Fly your flag to show your support every day, not only for them, but for the life you enjoy in this great country you live in! Think back on what the last four generations have "literally faced" - to protect what we have. We comment every time we see a flag displayed. It is indeed special to us.
"America's veterans embody the ideals upon which America was founded more than 229 years ago."- Steve Buyer
On this Veteran's Day, and every day from here forward, we should be demonstrably grateful, and acting by example, not only individually, but collectively as a nation, to help them in whatever way we can to in some small way repay our debt to them and their families with gratitude and respect. Not only is this the least we can do - it is the RIGHT thing to do.
Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for stopping by, and joining me in the "utmost gratitude" for our veterans, and their families.