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Proud to be an American – very proud

November 10, 2008

Normally, I try to be funny and, I have to admit, I can sometimes be a smarty pants (who me). But not today. Today is serious. It’s almost Veterans Day.

We should all take a moment and be thankful for our freedoms. In fact, it’s a holiday, so take the whole day and just be thankful. No complaining about this great country – no matter who you voted for or why you voted for them. In fact, don’t talk about politics for the whole day.  We are all in this together.

Take a second to remember that it is true, our freedoms were not free. Many people sacrificed for us – with their lives. Not just a little inconvenience – but their lives. They missed seeing their children grow up, they missed that last kiss from their husband or wife, they missed hearing how proud their parents must have been of them, they missed meeting their grandchildren – they missed everything. And, those who fortunately survived their service – well they were willing to sacrifice everything. Lucky for us.

Those of you who know my dad know that he is just one of my favorite people in the world. He taught me a valuable lesson when I was in about 6th grade. He was in the Air Force and we lived in Germany. One day I was visiting him at his office and we went out for lunch.

As we were walking, the National Anthem starting playing. It is a lovely little tradition at military bases that usually happens at noon. And it means everything stops. Oh, those were the days. Even cars. Everything stopped. People even take off their hats and put their hand over their heart. Beautiful! And, when I was out with my dad that day, this young kid in uniform decided that on that day he did not need to stop. Poor guy. He did it in front of my dad. Ooops.

Now, my dad is full of social grace, so this kid was lucky. My dad was a gentleman about it – but he made it clear. Crystal clear. You stop for the National Anthem – period. That had an impact on me – I thought, pay attention, this is very important.

From that day on, whenever I hear the National Anthem, I feel it in my bones. Really, I tingle. I get teary-eyed every single time. I am so proud to be an American.

Give yourself a gift today and click on this link. Nobody, and I mean nobody sings the National Anthem like Whitney Houston. She almost brings me to my knees. You can tell she feels it too – she smiles and she feels it in her bones. You can just tell. So, stop what you are doing and listen http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qciWEufZ2xA&feature=related – and take off your hat and put your hand over your heart.

And don’t forget to thank a veteran.

Thank you dad, thank you Joe, thank you grandpa Connors, and thank you grandpa Keresman! Thank you to everyone who has ever worn a uniform, loved someone in uniform, or God forbid, lost someone in uniform. God Bless.

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 19, 2008 2:55 pm

    What a wonderful way to respect Dad. Thank you for loving him and honoring him.
    R

  2. michael clendenin permalink
    November 10, 2008 11:43 pm

    God bless you, Ellen, and your father, and your family. What a wonderful, beautiful, timely post.

    Eight years ago, too many people said “He’s not my president.” That’s absurd, and will be no less absurd for anyone who says that today. We are all Americans, and no matter who you voted for, the winner of the election is your President. Thank God we have a country that allows us to elect our leaders even amidst this kind of political passion. And thank God for the men and women who have fought for our right to do so. Let’s not insult their commitment and sacrifice by belittling the election process with petty, juvenile tantrums of disappointment or just as juvenile gloating. Honor them by honoring our country and the process that works better than all others. I do so as a Republican who looks forward to the next election. In the meantime, let’s get America back to health.

    michael

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