It may be a path the young man or woman planned to follow since they were kids. It might come as a result of a major world event that stirs up their passion to protect their loved ones.
However they got there, they chose to answer the call.
These three simple words – answer the call – carry with them a great responsibility which less than one percent of Americans will experience through military service.
Not just any heart can answer the call. Only the courageous. Only the brave. Only those willing to take the risk. Only the ones who love their family, their way of life and their country enough to sacrifice it all.
They uproot their families and their kids to serve. They spend months at a time thousands of miles from anything familiar. They sleep in humble structures sometimes under constant threat of attack.
They may be the ones who have come back from combat seeing unspeakable things and fight internal battles every day. Or they may be the ones who rest in peace – who offered their lives and made the ultimate sacrifice in service to their country.
Since 9/11 alone, over 2.5 million have served in Iraq and Afghanistan. More than 6,800 have been killed. Over 50,000 have been wounded. Hundreds of thousands bear the invisible scars of war. And the effects are felt by families – moms, dads, spouses, siblings, children – who serve, sacrifice and feel the impact right beside their service member.
And they did this for who? For you. For us. For freedom.
So how do we respond?
There is only one way to respond. With gratitude.
This year, at Operation Homefront, we want to take it a little further.
We will be featuring veterans who answered the call, once again in our “11 days. 11 stories.” blog series beginning on Monday, Nov. 10. Please take a moment to read their stories. Remind yourself what true bravery looks like. We’ll also share about those who may not ever see combat but are just as strongly committed to supporting those who do.
And we want you to join us. In our own ways, here on the homefront, we too can answer the call.
Find a way to support those who sacrifice so much. We have some really great ideas for doing just that on our special website. It includes ways you can show support to our veterans, and our military, as we honor the brave ones on Veterans Day, and as we experience the season of Thanksgiving.
Our veterans deserve it. They answered the call. Today, find your own way to answer the call in support.
To all those who have worn the uniform for the U.S. Military, who have given so much…thank you!