This Memorial day I join with millions across America in saying to our Veterans, a heart felt thank you! Thank you for your service! Thank you for your sacrifice!
We remember the challenges many of you still face each day because of the wounds you have received, some obvious, and some not. Our country honors you this memorial day in a special way. We will not forget your service, and regardless of any political differences we may have, we must all join together in giving honor to whom honor is so truly due, our Veterans! On this issue all of America should be united. Our freedom was paid for by those that have gone before, and by those that are in the fields of service now.
Personally, I have not served in the military. I graduated from High School in 1975. The Viet Nam War and the draft ended that year. The war was over. I wanted to farm and be in business, so that is what I did. My father Loren E. Parker was in the Navy, he died when I was 7 years old. I also have a nephew that is currently in Iraq. This is his 5th deployment. To everyone that goes, and serves, thank you! We can never say thank you often enough. We can never repay what you and your families have done and sacrificed, but we can do our best to make sure our Veterans are cared for and helped. We owe them that. That is part of honoring them. It is our duty as Americans.
I have several in my family that have served in the military. My cousin Ronnie Dobbs was a helicopter door gunner in Vietnam. Others in my family have served. My wife's Uncle Bud fought with General Patton and was one of the first troops to reach the Eagles Nest after in was blown up trying to get Hitler. Many friends have served. I especially want to honor a friend I met just a few years ago. A man named Don Thomak. Don received the Silver Star, one of our Nations highest honors. He was one of the greatest men I have probably ever met. Don died a few years ago but his story of when his brother was killed right in front of him fighting the Japanese and his efforts to save the rest of his men is a story I will never forget. Those efforts won him that Silver star. He was a man's man. Thank you Don, and thanks to all that have done so much for our country and sacrificed so much. May your service be forever honored. May we never forget. We must not forget!
We have many challenges that face us, how to protect our country and deal with the threats we face. We must be smart in how we protect our Nation. We must have leadership to bring our wars to a close with honor and victory as soon as we can, but also be willing to use our force to win as quickly as possible when our nation is at war. We must make sure that the United States of America always remains the most powerful nation on earth, morally, financially, and militarily.
Our Country deserves no less, and our Veterans deserve no less.
May God continue to bless our country, and our awesome Veterans!