Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veteran's Day

Today is Veteran's Day.

Interestingly, a LOT of people think that Veteran's Day is an excuse for blow-out sales and half-price dinners at local restaurants. And since I was in retail for the longest time, I helped perpetuate that fraud. And I am sorry about that.

Veteran's Day is actually about the VETERAN. That's the guy or gal that took a couple years (or longer) out of their lives to serve our Country.

Some of them were fortunate. They travelled the world and guarded our countries while on foreign soil, but never had to see an actual war.

Then there are those, like my brother, who have been in the trenches. Jimmy was involved in the FIRST Iraq war. I remember watching it on television and being absolutely petrified for his young life.

My family has a lot of veterans in it. My Dad and my sweet husband were both in the Air Force. My brother was in the Army. My brother-in-law is a retired Air Force Lt. Colonel. My uncle Tom was in the Navy (that's where he got his tattoo). My nephew Bryan is right now on a Navy submarine somewhere only God knows. My other nephew, Brad, is in the Reserves, and knows his time to deploy is coming soon.

The men in my family have always believed in service. Not just for the educational and financial benefit, but to actually SERVE our country. It's not pounded into them - we are not a one-branch-of-the-service family. It's just a way of thanking the United States of America for all the good gifts we have received.

So today, Tuesday November 11, instead of going out and hitting the sales, maybe take a drive by your National Cemetery and plant some flags or watch the service. Or drop by the local VFW and buy a cup of coffee for the guy wearing the "I Served" cap. Or say a little prayer for all the active military personnel still serving around the world. Or just look at the American Flag and say a little "thank you" in your heart.

And remember, freedom is never free, and it's our Veterans (and their families) who paid the price for it. Amen.