Wednesday, November 11, 2009

From sea to shining sea

I know I'm not normal.

Stop it.

I mean, that I'm oversensitized to things military.

Is it just me, or is this Veterans Day different?

It seems more people actually are talking about the day. Honoring veterans. Being sincere about supporting the military, regardless of their feelings about these wars.

From left wing to right, from old to young, from gay to straight, from black to brown to yellow to red to white, from sixth generation families to newly sworn citizens, I've observed more outpouring of support this year than ever.

Patriotism is cool again.

Loving our country is politically correct again.

Honoring those that fight our fights for us is back in popular culture. You can see it on television and in the movies. You can hear it on the radio.

I attended the parade today in Dallas.

I just stood by myself and watched the people.

From 10 year old junior cadets to teenagers in high school bands to veterans of the Battle of the Bulge. Korean and Vietnamese soldiers that fought with us in those wars. American Indian veterans. Black veterans. Hispanic veterans. Jewish veterans. Cavalry on horseback. Marines in Humvees. Veterans on Harley's.

All waving, cheering, showing love for the military veterans of our country.

In Manhattan Beach, California there stands a piece of the metal skeleton from the World Trade Center. A somber reminder of love of country and fellow countrymen in a town known for fun and excess.

This morning, my 8 year old daughter and her Brownie troop led a ceremony of remembrance there. She volunteered to make the following speech:

Thank you all for coming to the ceremony today. We all appreciate it.

Veteran’s Day is very important to my family. My grandpa served in World War 2 in the Navy.

And a friend of mine, named OD was a Green Beret and served in the
Vietnam War. He is a great friend.

I also know a girl veteran. Her name is Sergeant Emily.

It also happens to be, my brother Peter was a Veteran too, but he died in Irak.

November 14, 2007 was very sad for everybody in my family.

My brother died just three days after Veteran’s Day two years ago.

My brother was crying, I was praying and my mother was taking care of my
brother Zac.

I lived in Texas and my dad was out here in California.

Two people came to my house who served with Peter.

I was still in my room praying and talking to my brother Peter and still do.

What I’ve learned is veterans are very important to our country because they help
us be safe and they help others around the world.

Peter and his troop used to hand out school supplies, clothing, and even soccer
balls to the kids in Irak.

Sergeant Emily helped soldiers who came into the
hospital wounded, like my brother Peter.

Veterans are people just like us, who miss home when they’re away and need some comfort.

Two years ago on Veteran’s Day, Peter asked his men what kinds of
things they would like from home and they asked for Oreos, Xbox games, Hot
Cheetos, Popcorn, Baby Wipes, pretzels, poptarts, and lollipops.

They just wanted some of the things we have all the time.

Imagine living without Oreos and Hot Cheetos!!!

We should remember the veterans that served our country and that are still serving,
not just today but every day.

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