Monday, May 26, 2008

Memorial Day

As I was sitting in a waiting room while Tricia was at clinic today, an older man (maybe my grandfather's age) was sitting nearby. He was wearing what looked like an Army hat with a bunch of pins.

After a few minutes (he was sleeping when I walked in), I asked him if he was a veteran. He said he was, and I told him, "Thank you for your service to our country."

He looked a little taken aback for a second, then smiled and said, "Thank you."

He then told me that it was about 20 years after he got out of the service before somebody actually said something like that to him.

That's a horrible thing.

If you are a veteran, or your are/have been military family at one point in time, my family would like to say thank you for all that you have done to keep our country safe and give us the freedoms that we are enjoying today.

God bless you.

Nate

42 comments:

Momof2bz said...

Amen to that! Whether active duty or not, any service is to be commended. The fact that these guys (and girls) put their lives on the line for our freedom and the freedoms of others is amazing. I can only think of one other sacrifice more worth of praise. Thank you for reminding us Nate. Hope you all are enjoying your holiday weekend.

WV to the VA said...

My grandfathers were both Marines, my uncle was a Marine, 2 of my brothers are currently Marines (one is a war veterans & the other is heading to Iraq this summer), & my brother-in-law is in the Air Force. I will pass along your thanks to them. I also blogged this weekend about two of my friends who lost their lives in Iraq.

It's so important for us not to forget. Thanks for your post!

Lisa and family said...

Thank you for your thanks! It means a lot to us, as a military family. My husband is a musician in the USMC. He is in France right not, honoring the 90th anniversary of a battle there. I can't remember the last time he was home for Memorial Day - but I know what he is doing is important.

Monica said...

Thank you so much for taking the time to share your appreciation. It does mean a lot for us to hear it. My husband is serving as a chaplain in the Army and was recently deployed to Iraq.

CPT Mom said...

Your gratitude mean so much to the veterans and their families.

I cry every time I thank a veteran. And I cry every time someone thanks mine.

Amy said...

I've been doing a lot of thinking today too, about soldiers and other people who just need to be "remembered." One person I am thinking about is an army captain I met on an airplane last Fall when he was flying home to surprise his wife for a 6 week leave. He had to go back to Iraq again after that. I never got his name but am hoping he is still alive and doing well. I am thankful for all who serve in our military and pray for their safety.

Amy

walkingbyfaith said...

Thank you for thanking him. I'm so thankful to each and every person who has helped to keep this country free. I appreciate you taking a minute to thank him, as I would love all the time in the world to thank each and every man and woman who have sacrificed for our country.

Happy Memorial Day!! :)

KELLY said...

That's so cool. Our son's high school photography teacher was the official "front lines" photographer for the government during the Vietnam War. Not only has our son received some incredible lessons in photography - he has learned alot about history, too!

WWW.ClayCleanse.Com said...

You're right. We don't appreciate our service men the way that we should. We need to do a better job of teaching our children respect of this sort.

WWW.ClayCleanse.Com said...

You're right. We don't appreciate our service men the way that we should. We need to do a better job of teaching our children respect of this sort.

WWW.ClayCleanse.Com said...

You're right. We don't appreciate our service men the way that we should. We need to do a better job of teaching our children respect of this sort.

Mommy to those Special Ks said...

Thank you for your thank you! My husband is currently in Afghanistan on his 3rd deployment. He checks in here from time to time so I will make sure he sees this!

Brenna Kate said...

Yes. Thank you, veterans.

Tracy said...

Nate-
Thank you for thanking that Veteran! Memorial Day is a important day-it took my family going through almost losing our soldier you realize the sacrifices that are made by all those that serve-(even though both my dad and grandfather served in the navy and my other grandpa in the Air Force)as well as their families. I found a very cool trailer to a movie about warriors at www.warriorsthefilm.com
It made my heart feel good to know you went out of your way to say thank you. Just wanted to tell you that.
http://pricelessjourney.blogspot.com
Thanks from an Army wife
Tracy

Andria said...

Heartfelt thanks.

Andria
(military family)

~Mommy 2 Four~ said...

It's always nice to be reconized. We are a military family. My husband has been in 10+ years so far. Thanks you for giving thanks. I appreciate it.

Blessings From Above said...

Thank you for the reminder!

God Bless.

Mary said...

What a nice thing to do Nate. It is a sad thing that our military is taken for granted. Freedom is not free. So I too would like to thank all that have served and that are serving our country. God bless them all.

Mary
Florida

Christy said...

I always thank veterans. They are the reason I live so free!! Thanks Nate for the reminder. Jason is a former Marine!! I thank him too. :)

Lockwoods said...

Oh so very true...how ungrateful we have become...every freedom we have was not free...someone else paid the price for it...even Salvation isn't free...Jesus Christ paid.
I love your new header picture too!!!
love,
Jaynee

KimberlyL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Katie said...

My husband was in the Air Force for 13 years and recently separated to lead a civilian life. He has always appreciated the thanks he received from people. I'm sure you made that man's Memorial Day very special. Thank you for remembering.

Katie in Dallas

The Browns said...

Thank you for that heartfelt note. My husband is active duty army and sometimes juggling that with my Cf is really hard but I wouldnt have it any other way. I am proud to stand up and say that Im a military wife and that my husband supports our country. It's just a way of life around the base here but to hear it from others non-military puts a warrmth in my heart that helps get me thru the cold nights when he is gone.

KimberlyL said...

Thanks for the thanks! My father has been blown away by the "turn" people have had toward him in the last 5 years. He has very VIVID memories of being spat upon, having rotten food thrown and various even fouler things at him, while walking through an airport in his Navy uniform when coming home on leave and finally at the end of his rotation in Vietnam. These are memories that stung and embittered him for a very, very long time. That, in conjunction with the way Vietnam vets were treated on the whole throughout the late 60's, 70's, 80's. He 1 time said to me that it was as if the entire US society could not believe that he was not ashamed of serving his country with integrity, pride and honor.

In the last 5 to 7 years, since 9/11 really, many people have approached him and thanked him for his service in airports, shopping venues, and the like - he proudly sports a Vietnam Veteran ballcap - and often when it is spotted, he is thanked. This is the first time this man has ever been thanked by society at large for putting his life on hold, leaving his family behind, and going to Vietnam.

This act of kindness by total strangers has healed a lot of wounds for 1 cranky old vet let me tell you!

So, I thank each of you who steps out of your comfort zone and approaches a man or woman in uniform, or who is wearing his/her service proudly through a patch, jacket or ballcap, and thanks them for their service, on Memorial Day or any other day of the year. You never know who's deep wounds you may be healing in the process.

Shannon said...

You have some great readers, Nate. As I read some of the comments I am proud of my sisters and brothers that support our troops from the home front. May you and all of your readers have a blessed Memorial Day.

De Oppresso Liber!

ditarae said...

I think it's so important for our children to understand our nation's history and heritage. My 6 year old knows, in a rather simplistic way, what today represents. We did observe a minute of silence at our home this afternoon... quite a feat with 4 and 6 year old boys! But we did it, with only some paper rustling from the youngest. They knew since yesterday that we would observe that at 3:00 this afternoon, and several times throughout the day they checked to see if it was "time to be quiet." The older I get, the more I respect and cherish our veterans, all of them. And though it seems such a small thing to say, THANK YOU!

Angela R. said...

That was a great reminder!!! Thank you too all!!

God Bless!
-Angela

Alicia said...

We appreciate your kind words. As a Navy wife, I can say we are thanked regularly by total strangers all throughout the year (and in various parts of the country). It breaks my heart to think of those poor families who sacrificed so much back then and received such little respect.

Rebecca said...

That story breaks my heart! I have two uncles in Iraq, a friend who is deployed, one leaving soon, and my grandpa served. They need to be thanked more than just memorial day!

Rick Lawrenson said...

At the Memorial Day ceremony today in Nags Head there was a contingent present from the local Marine Corps League - mostly a bunch of old guys in their red shirts and hats with the brass globe and anchor.

After the ceremony I went to each of them and thanked them for their service. It was my generation that protested their service in Viet Nam. So if I can express thanks to a vet, I do. I'll even salute them while driving by on the road if they have a bumper sticker or license plate that indicates they served.

They like that! And they deserve the thanks.

Tammy C said...

Your Welcome.
US Army 1977-1980.

I was brought to tears today at the Veterans Memeorial Day Service,only had 4 World War 11 in attendence.So sad to realize that these veteans are getting smaller in number everyday.

Erin said...

Awesome Nate... It isnt often that many soldiers/sailors/airmen etc. get the praise they so deserve. I am a Navy wife and daughter to an Army Vietnam Vet... My Uncle is still MIA in Vietnam... posted some links in my blog if you are curious for a minute to remember a wonderful man whose life was cut much too short....
Living in a military community life just becomes ohh... nonchalant... I suppose... and we dont ever really "think" about what our spouses are really doing.. it has become a sense of normalcy for us... but we are ever grateful for the sacrifice our spouses/neighbors etc make... and our loved ones would not live life any other way. They are proud of their service and feel the call of duty..... but Thank you Nate for taking the time to recognize a former military service member.... they are often not noticed....
Erin in Groton CT.... Navy Wife since 1999.

jamie said...

Nate, Thank you for remembering, and thank you for speaking to the veteran you saw. My Dad (now in heaven, and boy, do I miss him) was in 3 wars. My son has been to Iraq twice now, and is due to go back next month. It does my heart good when someone remembers them.
God Bless you all
Jamie in Texas

Debbie said...

Another Amen! I also always try to say "thank you" to those who serve or have served in the past, and the response is often that of surprise, which is so unfortunate. My dad served in WW2 and I don't think I ever heard anyone thank him, including, I am ashamed to say, myself. And now it's too late. Thank you.

Debbie in Texas

Gila said...

Does that include military physicians who served Stateside only? If so, will pass on your thanks to my father--twelve years as a doctor at Great Lakes and Bethesda Naval Medical Centers.

lbstr-quadrille said...

Thanks for taking the time to post that! My dad, brother, brother-in-law, and husband are all in the navy and its always really cool when someone appreciates what they are doing. Despite being surrounded by it all of my life, reflecting on the commitment and sacrifices of Veterans is so humbling. Thanks to everyone out there doing their part!

sara said...

Thanking & praying for our heroes that defend our freedom.

Kate said...

WOW! That is sad....sooo glad you SAID something to him! :) LOVE the new header by the way! :D Sweet!!

gracethruhim said...

AMEN! Thanks to all who serve and your familes for sharing you with us. We are blessed.

Thanks for pointing this out, Nate.

And, I have a friend who just got a nursing job in the ICU at Duke. I old her about ya'll's story and I'm sure she'll be blessed by it. Thanks again for opening your sweet family to the world.

Milestone Memories MN said...

I am sad to hear that that fellow hasn't heard that often but glad that you crossed paths with him to tell him thank you.

twin power mommy said...

I like to try to remember to tell those people (if i see them wearing their fatigues ((i think that's what they're called)) in public) that i appreciate them for what they have done for our country.
They always look shocked when i say that.
Good reminder, nate

zbaerenlovesme said...

Just so you know it really makes our day when you say thank you!!
As half of a dual military marriage, and a wife who's husband just got back from Iraq, I thought I would let you know that it really does mean a lot to us.