Veterans Day: a celebration of service

Dear American Legion Family members and friends,

Veterans Day is a time of celebration. It’s a time to celebrate the service of all who have worn the uniform. Our uniforms may have been different colors, but we all served under the red, white and blue. And we all took an oath that we were willing to sacrifice our lives for this great nation.

Regardless of whether a veteran has or has not been in combat, there is a bond that we all share. Veterans have all practiced the servant leadership that is needed to make a great military work.

It is this servant leadership that Americans everywhere should acknowledge the service of the millions of men and women who served in the U.S. Armed Forces since our nation’s founding in 1776. And while Veterans Day discounts at restaurants and businesses are a great way to say “Thank you for your service,” it is the camaraderie between our brothers and sisters that we are the most thankful for.

Veterans Day is a perfect time to check on the well-being and needs of our comrades. A simple “How are you?” is your opportunity to Be the One for a veteran who may need to know that someone cares, someone will listen.

Last month during the Department of Veterans Affairs first National Buddy Check Week, American Legion Family members made thousands of phone calls to veterans. Department of Ohio American Legion Auxiliary Historian Dayna Beyer made Buddy Checks and said that veterans “were surprised to get the call. They had a chance to talk about what they are doing, how they are feeling, and what we could do for them. It was surely well worth it for sure.”

Your phone call matters.

As we celebrate Veterans Day on Saturday, another celebration will be happening on Friday, Nov. 10 – the 248th birthday of the Marine Corps. As all Marines know, Semper Fi is shorthand for Semper Fidelis, which in Latin means “always faithful.” It is the motto of the Marine Corps.

Semper Fi is also an apt description of The American Legion’s relationship with anyone who has served in our U.S. Armed Forces. We must always “preserve the memories and incidents of our associations in all wars.”

Always faithful.

We will always mourn the veterans who are no longer with us, but we also forever celebrate their lives on this Veterans Day, and every day.

National Commander

Daniel J. Seehafer