News from the Tennessee Valley Opinion


We shall never forget the sacrifices made for freedom

With the exception of a few relatively short skirmishes and the current conflicts in the Middle East, America has enjoyed a prolonged period of peace and prosperity during the past 30 years thanks to the diligent aegis of the men and women of the U.S. military.

As we go about our busy lives — working, playing, raising families — it is all too easy to forget the sacrifices made on our behalf, yesterday and today, in defense of freedom.

We tend to take our liberty for granted. It has been so long since that first armistice, on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when World War I ended in Europe and the German threat was defeated, that we have become lax in remembering how close our world came to dictatorial domination.

After World War II, Congress declared Nov. 11 Veterans Day in honor of Americans who have fought in all wars.

Central to the observance of Veterans Day, and its predecessor, Armistice Day, has been the impressive ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldiers in Arlington National Cemetery. Those honored soldiers, "known but to God," represent the sacrifices of all who came before, who have fought since, and who will do so in the future to defend our country.

Freedom is not free. It comes at a heavy price. Many thousands have willingly paid the ultimate price to protect it in a just cause. Still others have been permanently injured in defense of our liberty.

On Saturday, we remember, honor and thank them all for their generous service.

As our troops spread around the world continue to put their lives in harm's way so we can enjoy freedom, take a moment to give thanks for their sacrifices and to ask God to protect them from harm. Pray also that he gives comfort and strength to their families.

We must never forget the price that was paid, nor ever allow those sacrifices to go unacknowledged.

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