A Grateful Nation on Veterans Day

A GRATEFUL NATION ON VETERANS DAY

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Whatever your age or station in life, a service member who has worn the uniform defending our country, has led the way.  It is only fitting that we take the time to express the value of these men and woman- our Veterans.  Today, a grateful nation acknowledges all of those who have gone before us, regardless of the danger.

On a personal level, in the 70’s while attending high school, the draft for Vietnam existed.  Lives were not only changed, but lost.  The military conflict divided America as we witnessed real-life images for the first time on our living room televisions.  To our Veterans: “No matter what conflict, whether you went by choice, or were drafted, you have my heartfelt thanks and appreciation.”

Thoughts from a grateful nation on Veterans Day:

“Veteran’s Day is a day to give thanks to the courageous men and women who have fought for our freedom.  There is a cost to enjoy the liberties that we take for granted every day.  Our Veterans, the brave men and women as well as their families, have paid the price for us to enjoy the independence that we do.  Veteran’s Day always makes me pause and say an extra thank you to all my fellow brothers and sisters who CHOSE to protect OUR great country.  I think any day, any time, you see a Veteran or a serviceman or woman, you should stop and shake their hands, tell them thank you.”  Volunteer Gloria Clough, Colorado State Coordinator, National Armed Forces FreedomRide.  Next ride, May 21, 2016.     www.cofreedomride.com

“I am deeply grateful for your service, for your sacrifices, and for your dedication to our great country. At this special time of remembrance, I honor all the brave men and women who, along with my father, gave us the gift of freedom that we cherish today.  You are the heroes and heroines that our children, and the generations that follow, will always look up to.  God bless you always and in all ways.”  Florence Yeager

“My Grandfather, Master Sergeant Wilfredo Perez was a true American Puerto Rican hero who served the USA for 28 years.  During the Korean Conflict, he was part of the 65th Regiment mostly made up of Puerto Rican Soldiers.  The 65th Regiment was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal in 2014.  During the Korean War my Grandfather suffered a serious injury that left him paralyzed for close to a year.  He eventually was able to walk but never fully regained his mobility.  He was disabled for the rest of his life.  Grandpa was awarded the Purple Heart and when I was in 5th grade he gave his medal to me.  I shall always cherish his memory and his medal.  Thank you to all of our Veterans and their families who have protected our Freedom.  Te amo Grandpa.”  John Sierra

“Veteran’s Day reminds me of my grandfather, as that was the only time of the year when we mentioned his service in WWII.  It was always a short thank you to him and wishing him Happy Veteran’s Day, and while he never wanted to discuss his time in the Navy, he was always thankful for the phone call.  When I sit around a table of veterans who are generations younger than my grandfather and hear them discuss stories, it makes me smile that they are able to have these moments of shared understanding.  I am glad to be a part of an organization everyday that helps foster these relationships and this type of environment.” Volunteer  Tara McMachen, Social Director, Team Red, White & Blue-Denver.  www.TeamRWB.org

“What is a Veteran?  Wikipedia definition is:  A veteran (from Latin vetus, meaning “old”) is a person who has had long service or experience in a particular occupation or field…  Webster’s Dictionary definition:  Long exercised in anything, especially in military life and the duties of a soldier; long practiced or experienced; as, a veteran officer or soldier; veteran skill… What is  not included in chronicled definitions are the many faces of men and women overseas risking their lives.  These definitions are cold and callous in their rendition of what a real veteran is.  It should read:  A person risking life and limb on the battlefield, putting their lives at home on hold until they are released from duty.  The written definitions diminish the feelings I have for our service members and the risks they take.  They serve to protect the interests of our country and the lives of those with war thrust upon them with little monetary reward.  Let them know you are thinking of them.  Give them a hand if they need it.  If you cannot help them, then at least acknowledge their sacrifice with conversation or a letter.  They deserve it.”  Jeff Bueckendorf

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One thought on “A Grateful Nation on Veterans Day”

  1. On this Veterans Day, 2015, seventy years from the end of World War II, I’m reminded of the stories that my dad and some of his friends would tell when I was a child in the 1960s.
    My dad was in the Coast Guard, patrolling the Atlantic coastline just off of New York City and Long Island during WWII. The Coast Guard, in order to cover that much ground, commandeered large privately owned yachts, put a gun turret on the front and sent them off to patrol the coast. My dad was in one of these makeshift Coast Guard boats. The eastern seaboard of the US was teeming with German U-2 boats at this time. My dad told us about the time that a U-2 boat surfaced right in front of their Coast Guard “boat.” Not wanting to expend a torpedo, or shells from its gun turret, the Germans gave an ultimatum to immediately get the hell out of there or be sunk. Of course, knowing that they were no match for a U-2 boat, my dad’s boat swiftly retreated.
    One of my dad’s very best friends, Uncle Eddie, was in the Pacific arena for the war. He was in the 2nd battalion of the 5th Marines that landed on the island of Tulagi, off the coast of Guadalcanal, in the United States’ first land offensive of World War II. The 2/5 went on to fight in Guadalcanal, Pellelieu, and Okinawa.
    I’m extremely proud of my father, Uncle Eddie, and all the brave men and woman who fought, and still fight, so that we Americans can remain free and safe. On this Veterans Day my thoughts, prayers and deepest admiration go out to all veterans and their families. Thank you for your service and sacrifice, from the bottom of my soul.

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