EDITORIAL: Remember veterans today

Posted

Back in 1944, writer Ernie Pyle described a group of American soldiers he accompanied into Cherbourg, France, with these words:“They weren't warriors. They were American boys who by mere chance of fate had wound up with guns in their hands, sneaking up a death-laden street in a strange and shattered city in a faraway country in a driving rain.”Throughout our history, many Americans could have been described in similar terms. They were just ordinary Americans who, responding to events beyond their personal control, became warriors.They faced sudden death in strange places far away from home, enduring not only the cold rain of France, but the frigid winter of Korea and the heat of Indochina's tropical jungles or Middle Eastern deserts. When they came home, if they came home, they often brought permanent scars with them, some visible, some hidden deep in their emotions. Some became casualties long after the war was over.They did all that, not because they wanted to, but simply because they were Americans, and their country needed them.Thursday is our special day to honor those who have served. For most of us, it is an ordinary work day, and we will spend the day going about our ordinary tasks. Carrying out those tasks as best we can is, in a way, an apt tribute to our veterans, because their actions have made it possible for us to live ordinary lives in peace.But sometime during the day, we all should stop, if only for a few minutes, and ponder the sacrifice of those who weren't warriors, but became warriors because they were Americans.We urge everyone to take those few minutes to remember and express our appreciation. It's the very least we can do.

Back in 1944, writer Ernie Pyle described a group of American soldiers he accompanied into Cherbourg, France, with these words:

“They weren't warriors. They were American boys who by mere chance of fate had wound up with guns in their hands, sneaking up a death-laden street in a strange and shattered city in a faraway country in a driving rain.”

Throughout our history, many Americans could have been described in similar terms. They were just ordinary Americans who, responding to events beyond their personal control, became warriors.

They faced sudden death in strange places far away from home, enduring not only the cold rain of France, but the frigid winter of Korea and the heat of Indochina's tropical jungles or Middle Eastern deserts. When they came home, if they came home, they often brought permanent scars with them, some visible, some hidden deep in their emotions. Some became casualties long after the war was over.

They did all that, not because they wanted to, but simply because they were Americans, and their country needed them.

Thursday is our special day to honor those who have served. For most of us, it is an ordinary work day, and we will spend the day going about our ordinary tasks. Carrying out those tasks as best we can is, in a way, an apt tribute to our veterans, because their actions have made it possible for us to live ordinary lives in peace.

But sometime during the day, we all should stop, if only for a few minutes, and ponder the sacrifice of those who weren't warriors, but became warriors because they were Americans.

We urge everyone to take those few minutes to remember and express our appreciation. It's the very least we can do.

Comments