David, I was reading through and whole heartedly agree. But at least now days, people do say thank you for your service (always feel a bit embarrassed when they do though…I just look at it that I did what needed to be done, sometimes good, sometimes bad, but it just needed to be done at the time, and I won’t go into the morality). I remember in my youth after my first hitch, they didn’t say thank you. You were lucky if they said nothing, most of the time when someone did say something it was always a very negative context (still remember being called a baby killer). Thank God our country has grown out of that. And, most of the people here on Govloop were born 15 to 20 years or so after those times, so hopefully they weren’t taught such in college. So I am glad they say thank you, it’s a lot better than what they used to say a long time ago. And, there are a lot of things that can be done to help Veterans. Sometimes something as simple as picking up a Viet Nam Vets bill at a café when you see the 7th Cav crest on his jacket. And, when he thanks you, just say “Gary Owen” brother. I work at a VA Medical Center, and I see the aftermath of 4 different conflicts and numerous brush wars every day. And, every day I thank God that I was not affected like some of them.
I look at it this way, I can’t change the world, but maybe I can just change a small corner of it. And, for the young folks here. If you are out and see a Vet, it doesn’t hurt you to maybe pick up the tab at a café, buy them a cup of coffee, or just tell them that you are grateful for what they did. And, if you take the time to talk to them, which more often than not is all they want, they all have a story of their life. A lot can be learned from those stories.