Every year we set aside one day to remember those Sailors, Soldiers, Airmen and Marines that have paid the ultimate price for our freedom. As President Ronald Reagan once said, “Freedom is not free” and no one knows that more than the friends and family of our military that have so valiantly given their lives in service to our country. To those friends and family who have known this loss I give my sincere condolences and gratitude for their sacrifice and promise that I will do my utmost to ensure that the fires of liberty keep burning now that their watch has ended. For those taken far too soon, I pray that the Lord above has provided them with a cooler of beer and a warm sandy shore on which to wait until they are reunited and family and friends in the hereafter. To our fallen thank you for your sacrifice, fair winds and following seas.
I would like to take a special moment to remind everyone that we still have warriors among us who are still in danger of falling despite not being in a warzone. It is estimated that between 20 – 22 military veterans take their lives every day. Many of these received their fatal wounds from the horrors of war that they received half a world away and have been running from that bullet for far too long. To any military veterans who are even considering this choice I implore you to remember that you did not survive your wartime experience on your own, you did it as part of a team. Well this battle is no different and there are plenty of resources available. Please allow the rest of us to help you carry this burden until you are ready to carry it on your own again. There is no shame in asking for help and I implore you to reach out to family, friends or trained professional because you cannot be replaced.