Don’t forget to say thank you

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By Rob Witwer

The every-other-week nature of this column sometimes makes it difficult to be timely, so let me apologize in advance for the lateness of these Memorial Day sentiments.  But I hope late is better than never to offer gratitude to those who have given everything for our country, and those who continue to make sacrifices day in and day out.

Thank you, Gold Star Mothers, who have lost a son or daughter in the course of duty.  Thank you spouses, siblings, friends and loved ones of those who died.  Their loss was not in vain, and a grateful nation’s thoughts and prayers go with you.
Thank you, veterans of World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Bosnia, Persian Gulf, Iraq, Afghanistan and countless other engagements across the globe.  Your service will never be forgotten.
Thank you, soldiers and sailors who have just returned, and must face the challenge of getting re-integrated to life stateside.  Thank you spouses and families who had to make do for a year or more without an important part of your family.
Thank you to those who await deployment, wondering where you will be and what will be your mission – and most especially, how your family will manage to get along without you.  Thank you spouses of those about to go, and thanks to your kids who will miss their mommy or daddy. 
There is a real war going on in Afghanistan right now, despite the fact that the American media seems to have moved it to the back burner.  American men and women are daily making tremendous sacrifices, and too many are making the ultimate sacrifice.  And let’s not forget the very real sacrifices being made by their families, too.
Thank you.

Rob Witwer is a former member of the Colorado House of Representatives and co-author of the book “The Blueprint: How Democrats Won Colorado and Why Republicans Everywhere Should Care.”