Last year on Veterans Day I wrote a list of ‘thank yous’ to soldiers—past, present and training. Re-reading it was a stark reminder of all the things civilians take for granted in everyday life, so I think that it bears repeating.
So to all of the men and women who are serving in each branch of the military, thank you…
Thank you for sacrificing your time.
Thank you for sacrificing your safety.
Thank you for sacrificing your sleep.
Thank you for sacrificing being there for your children’s birthdays.
Thank you for sacrificing being there for the birth of your children.
Thank you for sacrificing being there for their first steps.
Thank you for sacrificing being there for their first words.
Thank you for sacrificing being there for their proms and graduations.
Thank you for sacrificing your holidays.
Thank you for sacrificing good food.
Thank you for sacrificing a comfortable place to sleep.
Thank you for sacrificing clean clothes.
Thank you for sacrificing hot showers.
Thank you for sacrificing your own physical and emotional wellbeing.
Thank you for sacrificing your life so that I have freedom to live mine.
So many sacrifices, large and small, being made every day — across the state, across the country and across the world—to make my life more comfortable to live.
Freedom isn’t free and while those in the armed services should be thanked every day, Veterans Day is a day designed to remind us of all that we have to be thankful for, courtesy those who have served.
While Veterans Day is for vets, Armed Forces Day for those currently serving and Memorial Day for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice for our country, I personally think that it is never a bad day to thank a soldier, or a marine, or a sailor, or an airman.
If you are looking for a more tangible way to give back to the men and women serving our country www.uso.org and www.operationgratitude.com both have great options to help. Operation Gratitude even has a way to send leftover Halloween candy to soldiers overseas. It may seem like a little thing, but I’m sure that it would brighten a soldier’s day and it could also be a great teaching opportunity for kids.
Once again to all of the men and women who are currently serving or are past service members of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, Coast Guard, National Guard and Reserves. Thank you. It will never be enough, but I hope you know how thankful we are for your service.
As we all take time to remember those who have served in our Armed Forces, let’s also take a minute to remember those killed last week in New York City. Terrorism is tragedy of the worst kind. Innocent lives lost should always be remembered.