With Memorial Day fast approaching I can’t help but reflect on the many men and women who have served our country well. We honor those who are no longer with us.
A few weeks ago my brother and I accompanied our 93 year old father to the Veteran’s Hospital in Washington, DC. As a WWII veteran he proudly wears a black hat with the emblem stitched on the front.
While we were there I made a unique observation. There seemed to be an unsaid bond, brotherhood and respect among the veterans waiting to receive medical services. In spite of whatever reason they were there for, a sense of camaraderie was prevalent. One man stopped and acknowledged my father by thanking him for his service to our country. I know it touched him.
Throughout the several hours that we were on the premises we saw countless veterans from the many wars represented in mass. It didn’t matter that a lot of them had fought in the more recent wars. It did not matter that there was a significant age difference among them either. It was as if they knew that they were a part of an elite group of people. They were not arrogant in their demeanor but self-assured.
When we arrived at the hospital there were long parking lines and lots of traffic. But as we made our approach to the front, a parking attendant gave my brother a ticket and then took the car and parked it for him. This was quite helpful because it eliminated a long walk or pushing our father in a wheelchair for a long distance.
On our return trip I saw the street sign for the Walter Reed Hospital. It made me think of the many war veterans who were injured in some way while serving our country. To these people we offer up our gratitude for their selflessness and wish them better days ahead.
I have always been taught to respect those who have worn the uniform. It brought me a sense of pride not only to be a daughter of a wartime veteran but to also be surrounded by extraordinary individuals who fought for my freedom.
I am of the belief that we can never give our veterans all that they deserve. But I am glad to know that they can get some benefits as a veteran. To those who have paid the ultimate price, we can never thank you enough. In case you are a veteran reading this, please accept my unending thanks for your service.