Veterans are the best of the best

Please be there if you can.

We’re talking about the annual Veterans Day Service starting at 11 a.m. this morning at the Hanapepe Veterans Cemetery. It’s a chance to honor our veterans and show them people care about what they’ve done for our country — during their time in service, and after. Veterans tend to be some of the very best folks around. They know what it takes to make sacrifices for the good of others, usually people they don’t even know. They know the value of hard work and what it takes to put neighbors ahead of themselves. They are the best of the best.

Yes, Veterans Day is a federal holiday and it’s a nice time to spend with family and friends, celebrating a paid day off from work. Schools are closed so that means fun times away from the classroom for students. We certainly hope residents are able to enjoy the day with their loved ones. We also hope they find time to thanks our veterans for what they did and make the drive this morning to Hanapepe. You know that saying, “Freedom isn’t free,” is tossed out pretty casually these days, perhaps a bit of a cliche in the matter in which it is used. But it’s absolutely true. The freedom we enjoy today in this country came at a price paid by others. It’s easy to forget those who stood strong, even in the face of death. They are among the most valiant and bravest men and women you will come to know. And many did pay the ultimate price — their loves ones missed to this day.

In case you were wondering, it was President Woodrow Wilson who proclaimed Nov. 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nation.”

Cheers to our veterans, who really are the ones who made this country great. Thanks for all you did. And what you will do.

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