Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Veterans Day Salute Tomorrow Morning

Tomorrow is one of my favorite mornings of the year and one of the toughest. Every year I take alot of pride in sharing the following story with you. I choke up every year and I am sure many of you will too. Listen tomorrow morning at 6:45 and 8:15, tell your friends and especially any Veteran you know.


Some veterans bear visible signs of their service: a missing limb, a aged scar, a certain look in the eye. Others may carry the evidence inside them: a pin holding a bone together,a piece of shrapnel in the leg, or perhaps another sort of inner steel: the soul's ally forged in the refinery of adversity. Except in parades, however, the men and women who have kept America safe
wear no badge or emblem. You can't tell a vet just by looking. What is a vet?

He is the cop on the beat who spent six months in Saudi Arabia sweating
two gallons a day making sure the armored personnel carriers didn't run
out of fuel.He is the barroom loudmouth, dumber than five wooden planks,
whose overgrown frat-boy behavior is outweighed a hundred times in the cosmic scales by four hours of exquisite bravery near the 38th parallel.

She - or he - is the nurse who fought against futility and went to sleep
sobbing every night for two solid years in Da Nang.

He is the POW who went away one person and came back another - or didn't
come back AT ALL. He is the Quantico drill instructor that has never seen
combat - but has saved countless lives by turning slouchy, no-account
rednecks and gang members into Marines, and teaching them to watch each
other's backs.

He is the parade - riding Legionnaire who pins on his ribbons and medals with a prosthetic hand. He is the career quartermaster who watches the ribbons and medals pass him by.
He is the three anonymous heroes in The Tomb Of The Unknowns, whose presence at the Arlington National Cemetery must forever preserve the memory of all the anonymous heroes whose valor dies unrecognized with them on the battlefield or in the ocean's sunless deep.

He is the old guy bagging groceries at the supermarket - palsied now and
aggravatingly slow - who helped liberate a Nazi death camp and who
wishes all day long that his wife were still alive to hold him when the
nightmares come.

He is an ordinary and yet an extraordinary human being a person who offered some of his life's most vital years in the service of his country, and who sacrificed his ambitions so others would not have to sacrifice theirs.
He is a soldier and a savior and a sword against the darkness, and he is nothing more than the finest, greatest testimony on behalf of the finest, greatest nation ever known.

So remember, each time you see someone who has served our country, just lean over and say Thank You. That's all most people need, and in most cases it will mean more than any medals they could have been awarded or were awarded.Two little words that mean a lot, "THANK YOU".

Remember November 11th is Veterans Day.
"It is the soldier, not the reporter, Who has given us freedom of the
press. It is the soldier, not the poet, Who has given us freedom of
speech. It is the soldier, not the campus organizer, Who has given us
the freedom to demonstrate. It is the soldier, Who salutes the flag,Who
serves beneath the flag, and whose coffin is draped by the flag,
Who allows the protestor to burn the flag.

Father Dennis Edward O'Brien, Lt. Col., USMC

1 comment:

Sharlotte said...

I heard ths this morning and was late to class, so i could listen to it all and wipe the tears from my eyes before walking in to my high school. These words were more honest and touching than anything i have heard in a long time, Thank you, i have now posted this elsewhere so it can touch others the way it has me ( gave yall the credit for finding it :)

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