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How do you thank a veteran? Learn.

This Saturday, November 11, is Veteran’s Day.  For many civilians, it can be confusing.  Do you go to a gravesite (sure, if you want)?  Flag at half mast (nope)?  Randomly buy veterans beer (me first, please)?

Before I explain Veteran’s Day, let me tell you what you can do on Saturday.  You can come see me, Capt Bob, at the Vietnam War Foundation in Ruckersville, VA.  Where are they?  6265 Spring Hill Road in Ruckersville.  They have a great Facebook page and you can give them a like.  We will be broadcasting live on Saturday, starting at 9am, and I’ll stay and chat with anyone who comes by.

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1964 UH-1/D Huey

I’m broadcasting from this particular location on Saturday for a reason.  The only way for you to help us military come home from war well is to understand us.  To see what we’ve gone through.  To see where we’ve come from.  And there’s no better way to see what we experienced than through a military-themed museum.

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Khe Sanh airfield exhibit

The museum in Ruckersville is unique.  Since it is privately owned, the foundation decides what guests can do.  And they encourage you to immerse yourself in the equipment, the lifestyle, the weapons.  Want to climb in the Hueys?  Go ahead!  Take an Insta from the cockpit with an awesome filter and be the envy of your friends!  When we say cluster bombs, do you know what that means?  Well, you can pick one up.  See what Khe Sanh airfield was really like.  And docents are always nearby to tell you how it really was, because they were there.

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It only needs you holding the stick

Which brings me to the whole point of Veteran’s Day.  You’ll read in the papers or on Wikipedia the historical origin of Armistice Day, but allow me to tell you what it means today:

Pride.

Pride in our country.  Pride in our Constitution.  Pride in our willingness to do the right thing, even when others run away from the fight.

You see, there’s a lot of bullshit right now in the press and the TV.  Red vs. Blue, mass shootings, abuse, hatred.  If you believe all of that, then America is horribly fractured and we’re heading to another Civil War.

But on Veteran’s Day, on this day you should have hope.  Why?  Because on this day 21.8 million Americans are filled with pride in our country.  Because you should realize that every day young women and men volunteer their lives to defend our freedoms, to protect our Constitution, and to stand up for the defenseless.  That very pride is why I refute the narrative being shoved down our throats.

So what can you do this Veteran’s Day to honor us?  Learn.  Learn about our lives and what we went through.  Learn about the challenges we’ve faced and how we, some heroically, overcame them.

And you’ll learn why you should have pride in our country as well.

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The grey bricks represent those that gave all

Until all are home, and all are well.

~Bob

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