• James McNeil

Veteran's Day 2020

Today in the United States, we celebrate the service of veterans of the US armed forces. Veteran’s Day holds a special place for me. It is a day for me to think back on my time in the US Army. During this time of year, I notice that people show a bit of appreciation to veterans. Quite a few businesses offer specials including free meals on or around November 11.

While I love the idea of receiving free food, I would like to invite us to take a fresh look at Veteran’s Day, especially my fellow veterans. Every day, far too many of our brothers and sisters make a decision that leads to a permanent end to a temporary problem.

What can we do? If you’re a long-term reader of this blog, you already know the answer to that question. The answer comes from basic training. Throughout basic training, we were told that we needed to keep a battle buddy with us at all times. If the drill sergeant saw me without a battle buddy, he’d want to know why. Who was my battle buddy? Why wasn’t he not there?

We learned quickly to lean on each other and support each other. We learned that we needed each other to succeed in basic training and beyond. But when we left the military, many of those lessons were lost. We would scoff at the idea of opening up to a fellow veteran and admitting our faults.

Whether you are a veteran or not, if you’re considering that permanent end to a temporary problem, then know this. The world is a better place because you are here. You are not a hindrance, a problem, broken, or a mess. You are a masterpiece.

In addition to this, I say to my fellow veterans, thank you. Thank you for being willing to defend the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic. Thank you for being you. Hold your head high. You’ve got this.

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