Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Veteran's Day: Thanksgiving comes early

"I think there is one higher office than president and I would call that patriot." -Gary Hart

This week I had the honor of spending Veteran's Day with my favorite veteran: my Dad. He and mom were here from Pennsylvania for a short visit, and it was an honor to sit with him in church on Veteran's Day.

Growing up, I always was aware of his time spent in Vietnam, and was always proud to honor him for serving. I remember his funny stories about the water there being so thick you couldn't see your hand pass behind a drinking class, or that the first thing he did after mom picked him up from the airport was eat an entire head of cabbage. I treasure the quiet somber moments when I went with him to visit the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington D.C.

The Veterans I know are varied: a mom from our MOPS group; my brother who served in Afghanistan; my Dad, who was in Vietnam a whole year at the beginning of his married life; my brother-in-law who served in Desert Storm; my grandpa (now gone) who had flown in WWII; and so many more...

Including my cousin's husband, who deployed this week... Nick, whose son, Owen, was born only 10 days ago.  Thank you Nick!

I think what makes Veteran's Day such a wonderful day is it is a time to turn to those beside us and say "Thank You!"

  • Thank you for giving up kisses and honeymoons
  • Thank you for giving up special first moments like babies rolling over and cutting teeth
  • Thank you for giving up comforts like air-conditioning, fresh produce, clean water, and SAFETY
  • Thank you for giving it up for a time, so we don't have to, forever.
  • Thank you to God for bringing them home safely!

I think what makes it such a happy day is that we can tell them that in person! Unlike Memorial Day (the day we remember those lost in battle), this is the day we honor those veterans living among us. And may we not forget to thank their families who also sacrificed those precious moments with their loved ones. Take a moment and say a prayer for my cousin, Christina, as she begins this year of waiting... with her two little boys in her arms. And a thank you to those who support the troops and their families, such as our friends, the Scotts, serving in Germany with Cadence International.

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

1 comment:

  1. I can't speak for other veterans, but for me it was not a great sacrifice or hardship. Life has given me many ups and downs, whether in the military or out, whether incountry or in a foreign land. It's what you do. I never thought about avoiding the military - my dad served and I wanted to be like dad.
    Thank you, Laura, for a wonderful week at your house!


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