Veterans, Our True Heroes – Open Heart Story

Story By Cynthia Lee De Boer

The word “Hero” is frequently used to refer to a super human, someone out of this world. Now I’m not about to discount calling Thor or Captain America any thing but a Hero, and thank heavens for them as they are wonderful role models.

But there are thousands of average people who are heroes and are never recognized as such. These average human beings are our Veterans. They have served the people of our country and those in foreign lands at the command of their superiors. No matter which branch of the service, or what job they hold, they are always there. A seemingly endless supply of souls rotating in and out of service, some serving for two years while others devote their entire careers to military service.

I’ve heard people say, “Those serving in the military aren’t special, it’s just a job and anyway they decided to enlist. Besides, they knew what they were getting into.”

However, in the past, many did not have a choice. As for those who do choose to serve, perhaps they heard the call to duty so loudly that it could not be ignored. Others may come from military families where many generations have served in the military. These individuals feel service to their country is not only their duty but also an honor.

And what about the rest of us, the ones who have never served in the military? We are celebrated as a Hero if we push another being out of the path of a speeding bus or rescue someone from rushing flood waters or when one person steps in front of another protecting them from an attacker. The fact that these Good Samaritans acted without a thought to their safety is praised and often awarded in some way and so it should be.

Still everyday, here and around the world our military personnel protect without a thought of their personal wellbeing. They spend their time protecting our way of life while sacrificing their precious time with their families and friends, moments that can never be replaced. Living in often-horrid conditions and surviving on rations most of us would cringe to look upon, much less eat. Simple comforts we take for granite become extreme luxuries for them. Not to mention the fact that we can run to the corner market to pick up a tube of lip balm or a few rolls of toilet paper. In many instances our military men and women are in locations with nothing around for hundreds of miles.

These brave souls sacrifice their minds and bodies. And sadly, many pay the ultimate price with their very lives. How is it, that they are not on the nightly news? Don’t they deserve to be celebrated on a daily basis not just on Veteran’s Day or Memorial Day?

Perhaps this Veteran’s Day we should all pledge to thank our military personnel for their service whenever we are graced with their presence. If we see someone in uniform at a restaurant or coffee house, pay their tab, offer them your seat on a bus or in a crowded waiting area. Let them step in line ahead of you or hold open their door. Just do whatever you can to will show them your appreciation for their time and service.

May God Bless Them All!

Happy Veteran’s Day to Our Nation’s Heroes!

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