Today is Veteran’s Day. And as a the wife of a Marine, it means something different when you live with a Vet. Someone who has witnessed images we civilians can only hope never creep into our worst nightmares. The stuff no one person should experience, these soldiers and Marines witness firsthand, often while still in their teens.

I asked my husband John (gunsmith and owner here at FSD) what Veteran’s Day meant to him. Here’s his reply:

Veteran’s Day isn’t really FOR veterans. We don’t do what we do in hopes of getting recognition, thank you’s, or free meals at Golden Corral.

Don’t get me wrong, I know that the Thank You’s and the special recognition come from a place of genuine gratitude. I’m not downplaying those who show appreciation AT ALL. That’s sincerity and you can tell it comes from their hearts.

However, if anything, I feel more uncomfortable being put in the spotlight and having people ask me to talk about my time in the Corps, especially during combat.

Anything that I, or any of my brothers did, wasn’t for show, flash, or appreciation at all. That’s what animals in a circus do. They perform for the applause and rewards.

I’m a son of this country. I did what any son would do for his family. When called, I stood up and defended those I love (even the ones I don’t know) in order to ensure that my family – anyone living within the borders of the US – was safe, secure, and free. That’s all.”

And it isn’t just John that reacts so humbly when asked about their time in service. I can’t even count the number of soldiers and Marines who feel and react exactly the same way. Of course, you’d expect nothing less from TRUE heroes, now would you?

Today, as we honor and remember those who have given so much, let us also be mindful of the struggles, trials, and hardships faced in order to achieve the freedoms we hold so dear.

And while he, nor any other who has served, may expect to hear it, we – a grateful FREE nation – thank all of you who have served, past and present.