A day to show respect and gratitude, a day to demonstrate genuine appreciation. However, before we say thank you, we should take a few minutes to truly contemplate the meaning of the day, and the measure of our gratitude for those for whom the day is named.
Sadly, and with no intended disrespect, we’ve gotten pretty comfortable throwing around the word “Hero.” We often label the unusual or exemplary actions of those in uniform as heroic. Unfortunately, more often than not, the uniform upon which we’re focused is emblazoned with a number on the front and back, rather than an American flag on the shoulder or over the breast pocket.
We need to re-think that.
The person who wears the uniform bearing the flag puts on that uniform and swears an oath to risk the life they have to protect the life that we have. THAT’s a Hero! They take the risk, we reap the reward.
“Semper Fidelis” “Semper Paratus”
Though politicians and newscasters seem compelled to constantly make judgments (usually after the fact) as to whether the risk is worth it or not, the person in uniform did not have that luxury. In fact, they often had very few luxuries, because committing one’s time in uniform to honor, duty and sacrifice leaves little, if any room for luxury.
“This We’ll Defend” “Aim High…Fly, Fight, Win”
We all have our favorite “teams,” and even favorite uniforms. Let’s remember that the praiseworthy individuals for whom Veteran’s Day is named really are OUR team, and therefore it is for them that we should cheer the loudest. And not just on a single day, because for them, every day they were in uniform was potentially a BIG game.
“Semper Fortis” “Always Ready, Always There”
The calendar says November 11 is Veteran’s Day. However, let’s consider making it OUR duty to take the things we associate with Veteran’s Day (like recognition, respect and gratitude) and seize every opportunity to demonstrate those attributes on a daily basis for the benefit of the men and women of the United States Armed Services, past and present. They were and are our Team, and we owe it to them to be committed, supportive and grateful fans.