To the editor,

As we approach Veterans Day, it is fitting to note that we remember not only our past and present military veterans, but also their families. When our young men and women take the oath and put on their uniform, it is also their spouses and children that serve alongside, sharing both the joys and hardships of military life.

If the military’s primary responsibility is serving and protecting our United States Constitution, its secondary mission is to provide for the Readiness, Recruitment, and Retention of our military forces. Veterans and their families are key to securing these facets of our national security.

Readiness: Military veterans and their family members are in the best position to influence local, state and national leaders to provide our military with political, moral and financial support.

Recruitment: Military service to our nation is both rewarding and demanding. Therefore, before our patriotic young men and women consider taking the oath of enlistment or commission, they look to the veterans and their families for advice and guidance.

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Retention: Whether a military veteran serves one tour or makes the military a career, the oath we and our families take does not end when we hang up the uniform. You see their dedication to continue service to our nation and community with their membership and participation in military-centric and other civic organizations, i.e., The American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disable American Veterans, Vietnam Veterans of America, and Lion’s Club.

So, to those who came before us; to those who we have and had the privilege to serve with; to those who will follow us – thank you – for your selfless service. Still, it is also appropriate to thank the military veteran families for their continued service as they provide and support the essential needs to the military and civilian communities to ensure our veterans can fulfill their mission to keep our nation free.

Robert E. Greene

Post 6

American Legion

Grand Forks