veterans day

My Official US Air Force Basic Training Photo

Happy Belated Veteran’s Day

“Valor is stability, not of legs and arms, but of courage and the soul.” -Michel de Montaigne

I know it is a few days past Veteran’s Day, and I haven’t written for a week, but I have been recovering from a minor surgery, which turned out to be more debilitating than I had planned.  I also had a death in the family to deal with, ironically a fellow veteran.  But even though it is late, I wanted to write something about what I consider to be a very important day in our nation; the day we honor our veterans, of which I am one.

“This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.” -Elmer Davis

If you know someone who is a veteran, I hope you took a moment to thank them for their service to our great country.  I know I did to some, but I didn’t have the chance to say that to all.  Aside from those that I served with for seven years in the United States Air Force, I know a ton of vets, some from the Vietnam War, but most from the Cold War, the Gulf War, and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Regardless if a veteran served in combat, their dedication and personal sacrifice for our freedom cannot be understated.

“The more we sweat in peace the less we bleed in war.” -Vijaya Lakshmi Pandit

I am very proud to have served my country, and I know first hand what it means to dedicate your life to your country, for that is truly what it is. You are considered property of the United States, you are not a free civilian to do as you please.  You have made a commitment to your country, and you have to have the discipline, honor, and courage to uphold your commitment.  And for some, they paid the ultimate price in doing so.

veterans-day

The Cost of Freedom is Not Free

“Courage is almost a contradiction in terms. It means a strong desire to live taking the form of readiness to die.” -G.K. Chesterton

I know I have a lot of readers who are veterans, and my sincere thanks goes out to each and everyone of you, as well as to those who have lost loved ones who served our country.  If you have ever been to a funeral of a veteran, it is truly special how they are honored. Once you have served our country, you can be guaranteed that when you are laid to rest, you will have a military detail present at your funeral to carry your casket, give a 21 gun salute, play taps, and present your loved ones with a specially folded US flag. For anyone checking facts you will find that the government adds a notation to this service that it is dependent upon available military personnel due to current conflicts or wars in progress, but I have never been to a veteran’s funeral where these services were not provided upon request.

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” -John Fitzgerald Kennedy

A good friend of mine, who served in combat during the Vietnam War, sends me emails often about his views on our current government, and his pride of our Armed Forces.  He sent me a video on Monday that I hope you will take four minutes to watch.  It’s about Angel Flight, the plane or planes that bring our dead service members home.  The planes release fake missiles whose smoke trails create the form of an angel.  There is an accompanying song, and listen to the words of the pilot and the tower, and be sure to listen to the very end.  Click here to watch this video.

God bless all of our veterans!