Today has been a special day. It’s been a special day not only for us Yanks, but for countries around the world. For my friends in the UK, for my Canadian compatriots, and especially for some very good friends from Australia and New Zealand.
I am especially outraged today by a blog post I read early this morning. I think you know what I refer to if you’ve been paying attention at all either on Twitter or Facebook. This post is one of the most horrific I’ve read. The post has to do with what we call in the States, Veterans Day.
In other countries that I’ve mentioned, it’s known as something else but all in all what this day does is celebrate the sacrifice that our men and women in uniform have incurred over the years beginning in the early 20th century when this day, at least here in the States, was known as Armistice Day. After World War II, in the US, the name was changed to honor all of our veterans that have served and sacrificed for their country.
That’s what I want to discuss here, what the word sacrifice actually means. Most want to only acknowledge those that lost their lives in conflicts around the world. The word means much more than that and if you asked any serving person in the military in any country around the world, you might receive a different definition of what it really means to sacrifice for your country.
It’s about being away from home. Being away for long periods from family and friends. Not seeing your child born because you’re in some god-awful shithole where there’s no water to bathe, hot food is rare, and the elements are not exactly conducive to a resort.
It’s about being deployed on a fleet for months at a time, and all you want to do is kiss your kids. Or, like our Marines, rotating in and out of combat every seven months. Even the Army, those that were promised only a 12 month deployment away from their families, that spend 13, 14, 15 months away. Then to come home for six months and be redeployed.
To see where someone refers to those that have made that sacrifice as victims, really offends me. As a son of a paternal grandfather that served in the Ardennes in WWI, my own father that served in WWII, Korea, and Vietnam (he retired in 1969) and where the flag was passed, I take personal offense. I don’t know if this person does this to try and bring up his blog hits or if he really believes what he is saying. To every veteran out there though, to all of you, no matter the country or the conflict, or even non-conflict, you should be outraged by this blog post.
It’s belittling to your service to your country. It’s belittling to your country. It doesn’t matter that you’ve been in combat or not. Many, if not most of you reading this probably have served in arms. It’s the world we currently live in and for the foreseeable future, that’s the way its going to be because most, if not all of us, signed up to protect our way of life. Willingly.
To the families out there: you’re not forgotten. You have husbands, wives, sisters and brothers out there serving your country and no matter the situation, your best hope is to see your serving family member home. Those of us that have served, are with you always. Your family member is not victim. They are one of those that stand up in a world that is becoming more perilous.
It really coms down to this though: You’re the real #Heroes here. You support your military family member. You are the ones that give them the strength to carry on to complete their mission You’re the reason they come home to you.
So, thank you my brothers and sisters in arms, and more-so, thank you families; You’re the mechanism to bring your service member home. Be there. It doesn’t matter the situation. Be there for you military family member.
They’re out there thinking about you. Do the same for them. They’re not victims. Just some boys and girls out there doing a job that of the rest of our community doesn’t want to perform.