History is important to us at Aerotech News and Review.
We believe that when we remember and honor the past, we can provide inspiration for the future.
As Veterans Day approaches, our thoughts turn to the historical significance of the sacrifices made on behalf of our country by our men and women in uniform. Inspired by local community veteran appreciation events such as the AV Wall and this year’s Healing and Honor Field in Palmdale, we at Aerotech have often discussed creating some kind of online tribute/ acknowledgement for our military veterans — a place where family and friends would have the opportunity to submit tributes to their loved ones and acknowledge their appreciation for their service to our country. With this in mind, we would like to introduce the Aerotech News Veteran Appreciation Letters project.
Veterans Appreciation Letters, aka VAL, will provide an opportunity for our readers to create tributes to military veteran family members and friends, and have them published on the AerotechNews.com website. It is a way to publicly acknowledge and thank our veterans for the duties they performed in times of war and times of peace; the services which ensured the freedoms that we enjoy and sometimes take for granted. These “thank you” letters can be written to deceased veterans or those still living, but the idea is to recognize their contributions.
It’s important, at this time, and because of all the civil unrest that seems to be tearing America apart, to remember: United we stand, divided we fall. That applies to everybody. This letter writing project is meant to simply remind people of what it took to build up this nation. So it’s a letter to a loved one. It shines a positive light on the citizenry of the United States, a thank you note, a reminder not to forget the past. With so much racial tension existing these days, the key to this project looks at the veterans throughout the years who served side-by-side, working as a team to have each other’s backs during life and death situations — the notion of “no man left behind.” On battlefields, in war zones, these servicemen depended on each other for survival. Their race and/or their religion didn’t matter. Their family roots, planted in a wide variety of nations, didn’t matter. They were united as Americans. Not to politicize this, because it doesn’t matter whether the veteran was a declared Republican, Democrat or American Independent, but they all set a standard eventually reflected in the words of the late President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, when he said, “Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country.” What began as a focus on male relatives expanded to include females, whether they served as a nurse treating military personnel injured in the field, or if they worked in an office or at supply bases. The fact is, they too did their part for the war effort. So the letter you write can honor a spouse of any gender, a fiancee, a parent, a son or daughter, a sibling, a grandparent, an aunt, uncle or cousin — someone dear to your heart.
That relative of yours is in good company. Did you know that 26 of the 45 U.S. presidents served in the military, beginning with George Washington, leader of our Revolutionary Army. James Monroe entered the Army at age 17, where he sustained serious wounds, but survived. Andrew Jackson began his service at age 13 as a messenger during the Revolutionary War. Harry S. Truman fought overseas in World War I. Dwight D. Eisenhower commanded Allied Forces on D-Day. John F. Kennedy became a hero in World War II after his patrol boat was cut in half by a Japanese ship. George H.W. Bush was shot down in the Pacific during World War II. He flew 58 combat missions. Whether your veteran sat in the Oval Office — the highest position in the nation — worked in a coal mine, harvested crops or holds a medical degree, in the military they all were comrades in arms. We talk about equality. Where can you find more common ground than in the military?
We’re at the start of the holiday season, with Veterans’ Day approaching, followed by a “day that will live in infamy,” as stated by the late President Franklin D. Roosevelt, when bombs dropped on Pearl Harbor. Letters can come now and also throughout the year for other events like Memorial Day, the Fourth of July, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day or your veteran’s birthday. Send your submissions via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. In the subject line write Veterans Appreciation Letters, VAL. In the body of the letter include your veteran’s name, relationship to you, branch of military service, date served, and your name.