We are all one today.
Those who have never worn a uniform or been in a military family will not understand the bond. They can see it, they can appreciate it, but they cannot feel it.
An old man walks down the aisle of the store. He moves slowly, but with dignity. On his head you see the familiar blue ball cap. “WWII Veteran.” “Korea Veteran.” “Vietnam Veteran.” A ship. A unit.
You look in his eyes – and he in yours – and see recognition. He knows. You share an understanding that is only felt by those who have served. You shake his hand and feel strength.
And you see the smile of gratitude for remembering, and for acknowledging what he did for his country.
Those who serve at home – the families – have sacrificed too. They have felt the strain of separation, and the fear of the unknown. They have longed for the embrace of their Soldier. They have watched the news and worried about their Marine. Or Sailor. Or Airman. Or Coastguardsman. They are veterans too.
Today, on Veterans Day, we are all one. Our family, our military family, is like no other. It changed my life, and my father’s, and my grandfather’s. And it probably changed yours.
It kept America free and made the world a better place.
Happy Veterans Day, and thank you.