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On Monday, we again marked our nation’s reverent observance of Veterans Day; the 87th anniversary of the Armistice ending the carnage of World War I.
This year, as in years past, our nation finds itself at war. Young men and women, volunteers in the uniform of our armed forces, continue their unbroken legacy of service to our nation; a service conceived during the revolutionary cause of our fore- fathers.
Veterans Day has been and remains purchased by the sacrifice of others. Surely it is fitting to take a moment today to reflect upon and remember that price and, in particular, the very people who have willingly risen to pay much of it; our military veterans.
The bond between U.S. citizens and soldiers is inextricably linked in the roots of our American Revolution. Were it not for the support of the U.S. citizenry in the quartering, provisioning and care of its soldiers in the early days of the republic, it is conceivable that our rag-tag army and militia might well have given up the fight for the freedom and independence we hold so dear today.
That same camaraderie and familial spirit is no less important during these trying times, for such caring and concern is invaluable to the physical and spiritual morale of those who have served or are still serving in uniform. A simple act of kind acknowledgement extolled in a hearty salutation of thanks provides the most meaningful recognition our veterans could ever hope to receive from their fellow citizens because it personalizes the value of their selfless military service.
We should be vigilant in our search for them today, for time has already taken those who served during and in between the American Revolution, and the Vietnam War. While some of them have sacrificed much, all have sacrificed willingly and nobly nonetheless. Let us hope that whatever individual differences our citizenry may hold on conflicts past, present and future, Veterans Day may always remind us to ensure those differences do not detract into denigration of our veterans who merely seek solace and peace among their countrymen after having already endured and suffered enough for us all.
May God always bless and protect our veterans and their families.
The Rev. Allan Frederick is priest at St. John’s Catholic Church in Carrollton, Ky.