Change Is Hard

…but change is certain.

A simple thank you

14 Comments

Great Lakes National Cemetary

Great Lakes National Cemetery

Today was Veterans Day; the eleventh day of the eleventh month and designated by President Wilson in 1919 as a day to honor those who have given so much so that we here in the United States remain free.

It was a day for all of us to say thank you to those who have served our country in the military.

Flowers amid the stones.

Flowers amid the stones.

Over hills and across farmland, not far from where I live, is the Great Lakes National Cemetery.  It sits on over 500 acres, was opened in 2005 and is the final resting place for thousands, and someday hundreds of thousands, of veterans and their spouses.  The numbers, even now, are staggering and very visual as you look across row after row of white marble headstones.  You can become lost in the vastness of it.

Thousands of souls.

Thousands of souls.

Or you can stop and wander, read a few of the names and messages found there.

Wandering and reading.

Wandering and reading.

Each stone honors an individual, a veteran yes, but also a person.  A person that had a life outside the military, someone who laughed with family, hung out with friends, traveled, went fishing.

Sometimes the story on the headstone is simple.

Pearl Harbor survivor.

Pearl Harbor survivor.

And sometimes it gives you just a tiny glimpse of the person who once walked this earth.

Animal lover.

Animal lover.

So many of the stones reminds you how short life can be.  How short it was for so many.

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While we were out there we had something of a flyover.  Five sand hill cranes flew in formation directly overhead, crying their own version of a patriotic melody.

In formation.

In formation.

It seemed fitting.

Today was Veterans Day.  But really, shouldn’t we honor those who serve our country every day?  Tomorrow, the day after Veterans Day, take a moment and thank a veteran.  Smile at them.  Shake their hand.  Buy them a cup of coffee.

This WW II veteran understood the truth.

This WW II veteran understood the truth.

Make someone’s day.  And yours.

Let's not forget.

Let’s not forget.

Just say thank you.

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Author: dawnkinster

I'm a long time banker having worked in banks since the age of 17. I took a break when I turned 50 and went back to school. I graduated right when the economy took a turn for the worst and after a year of library work found myself unemployed. I was lucky that my previous bank employer wanted me back. So here I am again, a long time banker. Change is hard.

14 thoughts on “A simple thank you

  1. Happy Veterans Day. Beautiful post
    Snorts,
    Lily & Edward

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  2. Beautifully said, Dawn. Thank God attitudes have done a 180 since the conflict in Vietnam!

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  3. What a gorgeous, powerful cemetery. No need for anything other than a simple headstone. They speaks volumes.

    I try to say thanks whenever I see someone wearing a military cap.

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    • It is beautiful there. Was cold when we were there and windy, but still beautiful. And it was full of people because they held a ceremony at 11:00 am. Was nice to be there when there were lots of people. It seemed less lonley a spot.

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  4. It was cold and rainy here, but the parade rolled anyway. Lovely post, Dawn, and it’s a good reminder that we all should be forever grateful!

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  5. What a wonderful post and remembrance. The pictures of the headstones in the cemetery were especially touching. You might also like this post from Mary Lee about the poppies…http://merrilymarylee.wordpress.com/2014/11/11/poppies-for-remembrance/

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  6. Beautiful post, Dawn. “Staggering” is a good word for the vastness of such a place.

    I stopped by to say thank you. Thank you. 😀 Something arrived in the mail yesterday. Something that really made my day. Thank you, thank you, and thank you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Awwww Robin. You’re welcome. Hope today is a good day for you!

    Like

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