On this Memorial Day, it is fitting that we take a moment to remember those Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines, as well as, members of the Coast Guard and active reserves who paid the ultimate sacrifice so that we may all enjoy the freedoms we have today. As a veteran, I understand many of the struggles my fellow comrades in arms face as they prepare for battles yet waged and endure hardship away from friends, family and loved ones. So, on this Memorial Day, here are 10 things each of us can choose to do to honor those veterans who gave their lives so that we can be free, for those who still wear the uniform and for those who recently returned from being in harms way. May God bless them all on this Memorial Day.
1. Tell a veteran “Thank You”. For most veterans, that’s enough. All anyone really wants is to be recognized for a job Well Done.
2. Listen to their story. Whether an old WWII veteran or a Soldier returning from Iraq or Afghanistan, each veteran deserves to be heard now more than ever (i.e., PTSD).
3. Visit the wounded and infirmed at your local VA Hospital. Regardless of the troubles the VA is going through today, there’s no reason for their troubles to become your troubles. Visit your local VA hospital a give thanks to those who served.
4. Lay a flag at a Veteran’s Memorial/Cemetery. To find a local veteran’s memorial or hospital near you, visit the Veteran Administration’s website at www.va.gov and select the “Locations” menu.
5. Make a donation to a non-profit veteran’s organization, such as, the Veteran’s of Foreign Wars (VFW), the USO or the Wounded Warrior Project.
6. Volunteer at your local Veteran’s Hospital or veteran’s organization. They’ll be glad for your assistance and the veteran’s will appreciate your time served.
7. Hire a veteran. If you’re in the position to hire new employees, consider hiring a veteran. Most returning veterans only want a chance to contribute and feel useful again.
8. Pay for their meal. Paying it forward is always the kind thing to do. Why not show such generosity to a veteran at breakfast, lunch or dinner time?
9. Give ’em a beer. If paying for a meal’s too much for your pocket book, how about putting a cold one on your tab?
10. Pray for our brave servicemen and women. Many are still on-station manning a post or patrolling the oceans or the high seas. Some are still on the battlefield in harm’s way, protecting our freedom is a 24/7 job. I would ask that you keep them in your prayers.
That’s my blogpost for this week. Join the discussion and post your comments below. And don’t forget to tune in next week where I’ll once again share more ways you can break the debt cycle and then go…beyond.
Zebert L. Brown is the author of Break the Debt Cycle in 3 Simple Steps and a 16 year Navy veteran with specialties in administrative management, career development and public relations. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter.