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I think that we have forgotten the true meaning of Veterans Day. It is observed on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, and was originally known as Armistice Day.
Years ago, I had a rare opportunity to sit down with Charlie Mills (the former owner of The Leader-Union). He told me stories of bravery and sacrifice made by common, ordinary soldiers.
Veterans Day was to signal the stopping of the “war to end all wars.” Of course, we know that it didn’t.
Charlie made me see how important veterans are. I grew up in the Vietnam era, and witnessed a draft program.
We must not let the younger generation forget the sacrifices made by these great men and women.
Charlie told me of an individual who survived the Bataan Death March. My own father landed on the beaches of Normandy. He never talked about it, but he told my uncle that body parts were flying everywhere.
We must honor all veterans of all wars. We must not forget. Right now, we have men and women serving around the world. We must honor them – not only on Veteran’s Day, but every day. The freedom that they have given us isn’t free.