“the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month…” With these words, World War I came to an end. Ever since, our nation has celebrated Armistice Day, which has since become Veterans day.
Thank you, Veterans, for the service you have rendered. I am blessed to be friends with so many who have served in various branches of the US Armed Forces – too many to tag in one post.
In his farewell speech to the cadets at West Point, Gen Douglas MacArthur reflected on the values of Duty, Honor, and Country. In it, he captures well the character I have observed among my friends who are veterans:
“[these values] teach you to be proud and unbending in honest failure, but humble and gentle in success; not to substitute words for action; not to seek the path of comfort, but to face the stress and spur of difficulty and challenge; to learn to stand up in the storm, but to have compassion on those who fall; to master yourself before you seek to master others; to have a heart that is clean, a goal that is high; to learn to laugh, yet never forget how to weep; to reach into the future, yet never neglect the past; to be serious, yet never take yourself too seriously; to be modest so that you will remember the simplicity of true greatness; the open mind of true wisdom, the meekness of true strength.
They give you a temperate will, a quality of imagination, a vigor of the emotions, a freshness of the deep springs of life, a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity, an appetite for adventure over love of ease. They create in your heart the sense of wonder, the unfailing hope of what next, and the joy and inspiration of life.”
The whole speech is a masterpiece and worth reading on this Veterans Day.