These incredible men and women put each and every one of us before themselves. They do it because they believe in every cell of their being that it is the right thing to do. And so they serve.
Young and not so young. I have the great privilege of knowing many of these people personally. Many in my family have served in various branches of our military. Some for a few years, others have made this service their career. All have been changed by the experience, each and every one have them have said that it has made them better people. Well, I’m not in a position to judge that, I suspect these folks were always of outstanding character.
Some of the young who are currently serving spent quite a lot of time in my home as they were growing up. It’s always a pleasure to see them when they visit. They are unfailingly modest and grateful. Let me repeat that, they are grateful to our country for the opportunity to serve. Wow, that is amazing. I don’t hear bragging from them, they share stories of the people they have met, the places they have been. There is a quiet pride and dignity in the squaring of their shoulders as they salute, shake hands or hug those who have served before them. These men and women undoubtedly represent the very best of what America has to offer and does offer to the world.
Now I’ve got to be honest, I’m possibly a bit biased. One of my sons, Bill spent six years in the US Air Force. He speaks about his time serving in terms of what he learned, and the incredible bonds he forged with others who served with him. In many ways he is closer to some of those men than most of us will ever be able to imagine. We missed him around here while he was serving far away from home, but always understood that he considered what he was doing to be necessary and valuable. To Billy, I offer not only gratitude and respect of a citizen but also the pride and love of a mom.
Each and every one of these veterans is someone’s son or daughter. Many have husbands or wives, some have children. Each has left home, leaving family and friends to serve our country. Personally, I make no distinction between those who serve at home in the United States and those who have gone to far away places. They wear the uniform with pride and I am proud to salute each and every one of them.
To all of our American veterans, from all era’s, please know that I think of each and every one of you with pride and I offer you my most sincere thanks.
With love and appreciation, Sandy