These are my dad's medals from his time in Vietnam. The Bronze Star, Air Medal, and 2 Commendation Medals. I keep them in the Bronze Star box on my dresser.
I spent a few hours last night watching the final two episodes of The Pacific.
Seeing the needle peg from absolute crushing boredom to sheer terror for these characters was something that put life and November 11 into stark perspective.
I've never been in combat. Others have been in my place. I love my wife and my kids and would do anything for them - including giving up my life for them.
But a veteran has offered that same commitment for everyone in this world, and they will never meet.
My personal responsibility is to understand as much as possible for a civilian, what service and sacrifice really mean at the most basic human level. To read the stories, to become aware, to ask insightful questions, to offer support. To say, "I'll never know, but I can listen. What can I do to help?"
The words thank you don't quite cut it when holidays have been missed. When births, graduations, first steps have been missed. When buddies don't come home. When nobody seems to care. When horrors have been seen by their eyes instead of mine.
Let's go for a ride. Maybe take a walk. Maybe not say a damn word. Then, the first few rounds are on me.
Thoughts and hopefully inspirations from the Warmfront.