Veterans Day 2014

There are many special holidays and memorials throughout the year, but some of my favorite include the days when we remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice for us. Veterans Day is unique because not only is it a day when the people of America stop and say "thank you" to our military, but it is a day when those who did come home stop and remember their friends and brothers they left behind. It is a day to pay respect to the dead who understood the cost of liberty and freedom and were willing to pay the ultimate price for it. 

Something that bothers me, though, is that no sooner are these holidays and memorials over, than we move on with our lives and forget our gratitude. It's easy to "thank a veteran" on the one day in a year set aside by our government to remember these men, but it's a little more difficult to put our smart phones down and pay attention to the world around us, including the old man in the grocery store wearing a cap that says to the world, "I may be old; I may be slow; I may be hard of hearing; but I was once one of the guys who stormed the beaches of Iwo Jima or Normandy or Sicily." 

So thoughts for Veterans Day (and I know we are a week late... but it is still important): don't have November 11 be the only day in the year that you think about these dear men who are such heroes. At least remember to stop and talk with them when you see them. A simple acknowledgement, handshake or hug, and comment of appreciation goes a lot further than you might think.