Roberta M. Helming: REVISED: Let's Remember & Celebrate Veterans Year Round

Roberta M. Helming: Letís Remember and Celebrate Veterans Year Round

Letís Remember and Celebrate Veterans Year Round

It is a good thing that we have Veteranís Day and Memorial Day. Veterans deserve their own special days. If you know a veteran, why not celebrate with them on days other than these as well.

It is a blessing to work with veterans and to celebrate their accomplishments in serving our country. They made sacrifices in so many ways. Some lost their physical health, while others lost some of their mental health.

If given thought, veterans who served in foreign lands gave up the freedom to ďhopĒ in their car and go to a movie or to the fast food place. They lost precious time, never to be regained, unable to spend with family and friends. And in coming home, sometimes the adjustment period needed to rekindle relationships with friends and families were hard Ė if not impossible.

We have young veterans, just back from Iraq and Afghanistan, as well as veterans from the Vietnam War and even some from World War II. Their words regarding their time in war are ones that will change you. For unless you were in the war, you canít imagine what these heroes experienced and saw during their tours of duty Ė horrific things indeed. I have learned that regardless of the challenges the war left them with, they remain proud of their service, as they should be.

It is a pleasure to sit down over a coffee and talk to a veteran about his or her experiences-something I highly recommend.

And may our government remember our veterans and provide them with all the medical and mental health services they need. Some veterans were drafted, some volunteered Ė either way they served and served well and now it is time for us to remember that America is what it is and we have the freedoms we have thanks to these brave men and women. They helped us Ė now let us help them.

A special thank you to US Representative Joe Courtney (Democrat, Connecticut 2nd District) for his dedication to the veterans, in particular within Southeastern Connecticut.

Roberta M. Helming