- On November 11, 2014
TO: OIF/OEF Vets
FROM: A Cold War Vet
Like the rest of the nation on this Veterans Day, I offer a heartfelt “thank you for your service.” You embody everything good and noble that this nation was founded on.
– Some of you joined the military because it was a family tradition.
– Some of you were looking for adventure.
– Some of you were escaping a dead-end work or home-life.
– Some of you needed the money and a steady paycheck.
However you found your way into the Army, Marines, Navy, or Air Force, you raised your right hand and swore to defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, and to bear true faith and allegiance to the same.
Courage isn’t only found on the battlefield. It happened right then, when you first raised your right hand. Most of you took that oath in a time of war, knowing full well what may lie ahead.
You wrote a commitment check to the nation– for an unlimited amount– to do whatever it takes. And, some of your comrades cashed in that check.
Wherever you go from here, remember that courage is still there inside you. Once you leave the military getting back to the ‘real world’ can seem overwhelming. It seems like no one has been through what you’ve been through. You are here and your battle buddies aren’t. The ‘thank you for your service’ sounds hollow instead of sincere.
Don’t ever forget that you embodied courage one day years ago in the simple act of choosing to make a difference. Whatever you do from now on — Being a good parent. Starting a business. Finding the right career. Going to school.—You made a commitment to make a difference, to do whatever it takes.
Your duty isn’t done. It continues because of the oath you once took. The nation has high expectations of you in uniform. Your fellow veterans have even higher expectations of you out of uniform.
I honor your courage and am proud of our shared legacy of service.
What we did in uniform made a difference to this nation. We expect no less of each other now.