One day, I was out with a group of soldiers on a training exercise. We were hot, tired, dirty, and very hungry. The rain dripped off my helmet. One of the soldiers began to complain about our circumstances.
I said, “Yeah, but don’t you just love it?”
Everyone laughed and said yes, even the one who complained. It was one of the best days ever.
Being in the Service, I have experienced feelings and situations that most other people will never know. I have seen people perform the greatest acts of courage and cowardice imaginable. Explosions, air raid sirens, screaming, and crying have filled my ears. Burning oil wells on a limitless horizon. I have surprised myself at what heights I can reach. One night, I decided that the lives of over 10,000 men from various nations were more important than my own, and I completed a potentially deadly situation alone.
War is a nasty business, filled with killing and destruction. Video games. books, and movies never quite capture the true emotion. Many people never come home, or have their bodies and minds shattered by the experience. It should never be entered into lightly.
I have been luckier than many. No Purple Heart, and no Gold Star in the window at home. The Hurt Locker changes you. In my case, I think for the better.
Veteran’s Day is a celebration of the end of The Great War. They hoped it was the last, but it was not to be. Even today, people will die in conflict while I enjoy my free appetizer at Outback Steakhouse.
Today, think of all those who have served, and are serving now. Especially think about their loved ones, who worried and prayed for them.
Welcome to The Suck.