My Father and Grandfather are veterans. They both served our country, however they don’t talk about it much. To my knowledge, they don’t have any identifying marks or anything that would lead you to believe they had served. Because of this, I never thought about it much as a kid. I had many friends who left to serve after high school and even more after 9/11. Though I considered making that decision, I decided to stay behind and work. When I was younger, all I heard people talk about was the monetary aspects of joining the Army. I watched many join, get their bonus, and waste it. That gave me the perspective that most of the people my age in the service were doing it for money because they couldn’t figure out any other way to make an income. Over the last five or so years, I have had a much closer connection and appreciation with those who have served. I don’t think that many these days go into the service thinking about serving our country so much as they think about getting that bonus money. Regardless, many of us find ourselves in situations where we have to step up. Even if someone joins the service to “get paid,” they will quickly find themselves having to step up and live up to the calling. It’s all about what each person does when they have to step up and decide to take action or cower in the corner.
This year, I had the opportunity to do some work with SupportMilitary.org and I met some heros who gave all they had and came back damaged. We hear stories of fallen soldiers who don’t make it back but not often do we hear much from those who came back wounded. It was amazing to meet a couple of these warriors hear their stories. These are men and women who regardless of the reason for serving, performed a duty and were wounded. Not all who serve come back wounded, I get that, but the sacrifice was made. Heros come in all shapes and sizes, in all walks of life. Veteran’s Day calls us to remember what those gave to assure our freedom remains a birthright. Some fight on the frontlines and others perform tasks no where near harms way, it is all the same.
The following video reminded me that regardless of when someone served, they should be honored. I am blessed to have several family members who served and came home. Not all are as lucky as I am. I will teach my kids to honor those who served so they could be born into a free country. Though our government is slowly taking away our freedoms we are still the freest people on the planet.
I was born free with the ability to do and achieve whatever I set forth to do. I look at the things I have been able to do in life and I know that none of that would be possible if it were not for those who fought for our country. Though we may not have a solid understanding of what or why our soldiers are still fighting today, it is important that they know that we support them as individuals who decided to serve our country. My family and I support those who serve our country. I think it is important that our children understand what that means.
Happy Veteran’s Day to those who have served or have a loved one who has served. You are appreciated.