Seriously. That’s what the whole day is for. If you have a chance, please do so personally.
In my case – I’d like to thank my dear friend the Barking Spider. We shared a blog for a while – many years prior we shared a dormitory, where he was my RA. Before that, as he likes to say, he was “drinking beer on three continents.”
Put that way, it sounds like he backpacked around for a while trying to find himself, like some bored college grad putting off adulthood for a while. The difference, however, is that at any time, somebody could have decided to start a war someplace that would have required the participation of our armed forces, and in that case, it was USAF SSgt Spider who would have helped to load the cargo planes to supply our troops in their efforts.
By the time I’d met Spider, he had moved to the Air National Guard (one weekend a month, two weeks a year). He served there for many years after his active duty had ended. It doesn’t make for stirring speeches or major motion pictures, nor does it have to. So many of our finest citizens have already done that and more, and will continue to do so whenever our liberty and safety are in danger.
I don’t come from a military family. Three of my four grandparents served in WW2; my father, who would have been drafted to serve in Vietnam, was 4-F. I never did find out whether or not he was against that war, but I do know that it bothered him that he could not serve the way his father and mother did.
For Spider, and for THS and Major Dad and all the many military families who read and comment at the Swilling, for my mom’s dad and my dad’s uncle, who are still with us – thank you for all you have done, and for all you still do.