Updated: Nov 17, 2020
Picture #1: James "Jim Ed" Evans Picture #3: Callis Lee Thompson
Today we honor every man and woman who has selflessly served our nation. Veterans Day is an opportunity for us all to reflect on the sacrifices so many have made by answering the call to serve; and though they proudly and willfully serve, it truly is a sacrifice. Their service requires them to give up their time, as they leave loved ones behind in order to travel all around the world to ensure your safety and mine. It's a sacrifice because many of our veterans will miss precious moments, such as the birth of a child, birthdays, anniversaries, first steps, and much more; moments they guarantee to each of us by being the ones to stand up and dedicate their lives to our safety.
More obvious is the sacrifice that many veterans have made when they gave it all; when they gave their life for their fellow soldiers on the battle field, for the mission, and for each of us. It's a very sobering moment when we see flag-draped coffins being unloaded from an aircraft. It's a reminder that while life seems to go on as usual over here, safely within the boarders of our country, our brave men and women are engaged in deadly combat to keep the fight and violence as far away from us as possible.
Then there are the injuries that many soldiers sustain as a result of their service. Men and women maimed by instruments of warfare, forced to carry that scar, that reminder, around with them for the rest of their lives. We must also remember the psychological casualties as well. The impact of deadly combat and other stressful situations can forever change a person. It's difficult to fathom what our veterans must have seen while serving their country; they truly witness humanity at its worse.
The impact our veterans have on our nation is indeterminable. We know of some of the instances they have served us and protected us, but it's impossible to tell how many threats or attacks they have stopped by their mere presence. I would hate to imagine a world without they type of brave men and women it takes to stand up to evil nations and keep them at bay.
Our veterans also engage in many humanitarian missions around the world. They assisted with the Fukushima nuclear power plant after an earthquake and tsunami. In 2010 our men and women served in Haiti after a major earthquake devastated the region. Our veterans assisted in Indonesia more than once after earthquakes and tsunami's ravaged the area.
Members of our military also serve in our local communities. They have assisted after countless natural disasters. Recently, they were called to assist with the COVID-19 outbreak. Members of the Coast Guard are often called upon to assist in search and rescue missions, as well as fend off drug traffickers trying to breach our borders so they can spread their poison.
We have so much to be thankful for, and it is all due to the men and women serving our country. Our freedoms are often taken for granted, as we frequently forget the price that we're paying for that freedom. So take the time, when you happen upon one of our veterans or active duty personnel, and thank them. Let them know just how much you appreciate all that they are doing for us all.
And next time you're driving through a small town and see the flag-lined streets leading up to and around the square, remember that they are not just there because it looks nice. Remember that they are there because some brave man or woman made the decision to risk it all for you and your freedoms.
Happy Veterans Day. And thank you, to all the brave servicemen and servicewomen, for all that you do.