11 November 2021

Note from Norm: Say Thank You and More This Veterans Day

Veterans Day isn’t Memorial Day.

Memorial Day is the day we pay homage to those who gave their life in service to America.

Veteran’s Day is for all who have served America in our nation’s uniform.

And, for a more detailed description of the important differences between the two I would encourage you to go to this website and learn more:  https://www.uso.org/stories/2522-understanding-the-difference-of-memorial-day-vs-veterans-day

America is the nation we are today, pure and simple, because the men and women who have served in the uniform of our nation’s military.

The men and women who have worn the uniform in the past.  And those Americans who wear the uniform today protecting America at home and across the world.

Yet, the America we have today all too often finds itself forgetting about those men and women who served our nation and represent today’s veterans.

It is estimated that 22 American military veterans commit suicide a day.  That’s one Veteran taking his or her life every 65 minutes.

Military Times reports that “…of every 10,000 veterans in the United States, 21 were experiencing homelessness at the start of last year. Veterans make up about 6 percent of the population of the United States but 8 percent of the country’s homeless population.”

There are a lot of things that divide Americans today – and in government and politics those divisions sometimes seem so harsh that it is tough to imagine finding anything people can agree on.

Yet, time and time again Americans, and those we elect to public office, have agreed that living up to our commitment to those who have served this nation in time of war and peace is our moral imperative and obligation.

Still, despite our best efforts we far too often fall far to short in those commitments.

We can do better.  We must do better.  And, by doing better for our Veterans we do better for America.

The man I am today, the blessings I have in my life, are attributable to those who have served our nation in war and peace.  Those who gave their lives in every war America has fought at home, and abroad.

My children’s future is assured because of men  like my Dad, who  landed on the beaches of Normandy in the early hours, earned his Purple Heart at the Battle of the Bulge and liberated concentration camps-and came back to build the greatest nation on earth.

And by my grandfather before him, a veteran of  the of the 1st World War-who was severely wounded, but survived to beget a son, a Grandson(me)-And my son, Jacob and now his three little boys. All who have enjoyed or are enjoying the fruits of liberty-enabled by their forefathers  sacrifice.

The nation that is America today and the one that remains the last best hope of the world stands strong and vigilant because of our nation’s veterans.

It doesn’t take much to say “Thank You” to a veteran today.  Just a moment from your day to smile, shake a veteran’s hand and simply say “Thank you for your service.”

But, if you want to do more to impact the lives of those who have given you the life you have today, then I would draw your attention to the following website that provides links to a number of highly reputable organizations supporting veterans.

The link is https://www.charitynavigator.org/index.cfm?bay=content.view&cpid=531 and here you can find dozens of legitimate, credible non-profits supporting our nation’s veterans and military service members.

America’s most consequential General and President, George Washington, made it clear that the decision to send men and women into battle in our nation’s name wasn’t a choice for them to make.

But the choice about how We, the People, chose to treat those who fought and served in our nation’s name, certainly was, and remains, ours to make:

“The willingness with which our young people are likely to serve in any war, no matter how justified, shall be directly proportional to how they perceive the Veterans of earlier wars were treated and appreciated by their nation.”