From the onset in 1775, to the caves in Iraq and Afghanistan, thank you for enduring all the hardships that come from war and dealing with the trials of combat so that the rest of us can continue to live our lives in relatively peace.
Specifically, I would like to anchor this post to the theme of my blog: remembrance. Remember those who have gone before, who have suffered tragedies, who have died horrifically–not merely for the preservation of this nation and this way of life–for the protection of our borders from foreign invaders.
To my ancestors, the veterans of our Revolutionary War, long dead, we thank you–for marching bravely into the face of uncertainty; we thank you fighting through terrible disease (Typhus & Small Pox), for facing the threat of capture and potentially dying (as so many had) in the squalor of prison ships along the beaches of New York and New Jersey. We thank those in graves with names and those without names for recognizing the greatness in our country even when so many did not see it (and still so many still do not see it).
To all American veterans of all wars, past and present: Thank you.
And we apologize. We apologize for not giving you the respect you deserve. We apologize for allowing your headstones to fall into disrepair. We apologize for disturbing your remains because we care more about paving them over in the name of commerce and modernization rather than respecting our brave sons and daughters who so eagerly were sacrificed. We also apologize for forgetting where and when you were buried, thus we cannot respectfully honor you or permit you a decent burial.
We apologize for leaving so many of you alone, struggling with the demons of the wars to which you were sent to fight. We apologize for the thousands of you who have been honorably discharged, yet are left starving and jobless. We apologize for the damage done to your families, the stress caused to your loved ones.
To all American veterans of all wars, past and present: We are so sorry.
Help us all discover ways we can make a difference, so one day in the future we not have to apologize to our vets again.