Courage is almost a contradiction in terms.
It means a strong desire to live taking the form of a readiness to die.
~ G.K. Chesterton
To our U.S. veterans–with deep appreciation and gratitude–for the freedoms you have defended on behalf of us all:
My father was one of the fortunate ones who came home, returning to a quiet farm life after three years serving in the Marines Corp from 1942 to 1945 on Tarawa, Saipan and Tinian. Hundreds of thousands of his colleagues didn’t come home, dying on beaches and battlefields. Tens of thousands more came home forever marked, through physical or psychological injury, by the experience of war.
No matter how one views WWII, or the subsequent wars that our nation has fought and currently is fighting, we must support and care for the men and women who have made the commitment to be on the front line for freedom’s sake and for our sake.
I’m unsure why the United States does not call November 11 Remembrance Day as the Commonwealth nations did after WWI. This is a day that demands much more than the more passive name Veterans’ Day represents.
This day calls all citizens who appreciate their freedoms to stop what they are doing and disrupt the routine rhythm of their lives. We are to remember in humble thankfulness the generations of military veterans who sacrificed time, resources, sometimes health and well being, and too often their lives in answering the call to defend their countries.
Remembrance means never forgetting what it costs to defend freedom. It means acknowledging the millions who have given of themselves and continue to do so on our behalf. It means never ceasing to care. It means a commitment to provide resources needed for the military to remain strong. It means unending prayers for safe return home to family. It means we hold these men and women close in our hearts, always teaching the next generation about the sacrifices they made.
Most of all, it means being willing to become the sacrifice if called.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.~Lieutenant-Colonel (Dr.) John McCrae from “In Flanders Fields”