As the mother of a U.S. Marine, and mother-in-law to a sailor in the U.S. Navy, Veterans Day has special meaning for me. Today, I would like to thank my son Ryan and my daughter-in-law Elizabeth for their service to our country--and extend that gratitude to all America's veterans and active duty service members.
From the mom's chair, I've had a close-up view of the very special strains and stresses encountered by our young people in service, and by the family members who support them as they serve.
Over the years, I've watched my son progress from recruit to Staff Sergeant, and held him close in my heart as he went through two overseas deployments.
On September 11, 2001, Ryan called me from his barracks before dawn to let me know his unit had been placed on high alert--and that call led to this writer's most-read, most-published piece of work: My Child, My Home, My Country: A Marine Mom Speaks. That essay still speaks for my feelings today.
Since 2002, I've looked on with amazement and respect as my lovely daughter-in-law Elizabeth tackled marriage, pregnancy and childbirth, all while serving as a sailor--and later, as she coped so ably to run her household and rear her children as the spouse of a deployed Marine.
So you can say I have a pretty good idea of the "why" behind the Veterans' Day holiday.
But if you need a picture to get the picture? Here you go: our very own Webmaster Ryan and his brilliant and beautiful wife Elizabeth.
Thank you, my dear ones, for your service--and may you stand as the faces who represent all those whom we honor today: