Veterans’ stories deserve to be told, remembered, documented

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America tipped its hat in unity this week, thanking any and all who are now or have ever worn a United States military uniform.
That sense of unity in and of itself is so powerful, especially at a time when our nation tends to focus more on our philosophical differences. The one thing it seems that we as a nation consistently agree on is standing united in support of our veterans, as we should.
I get goose bumps whenever a crowd comes to its feet as one to salute the men and women who have served on our behalf. Whether it’s at a Veteran’s Day program, sporting event, county fair, A’ROR’N Days parade, Husker game or whatever, that sense of patriotism and shared support gets me every time. It makes me proud to be an American.
The News-Register shared a community thank you to veterans in last week’s edition, also giving two proud veterans a chance to share memories of their time in uniform. Gary Ross had a front row seat to the Cold War and shared fascinating insight from the other side of the wall in Germay. Marlin Seeman also talked about what it means to him to serve as a Sentinel at Saturday’s Husker game in Lincoln.
Sharing those memories of a time in life when they put themselves in harm’s way, no matter how many years ago it happened, is such a key piece of what Veteran’s Day has become over the years. For whatever reason, many veterans are hesitant to share their stories in detail, wanting to remain humble and not draw the spotlight when they know that others gave as much, if not more, with so many paying the ultimate sacrifice. And yet, those stories need and deserve to be told, remembered, documented and passed on to the next generation of family, friends and neighbors.
This week’s edition shares several stories about Veteran’s Day programs in the area. It’s important not only for veterans to be handed a microphone, but for all of us to really listen and take to heart the messages they have to share.
Regardless of their role, all served their nation and made personal sacrifices. We owe them a genuine salute, and an ear if they have the time and desire to share their service memories.
We salute you!
Kurt Johnson

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