Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Honoring My Vets this Veteran’s Day

I come from a long line of veterans.  I’m proud of that fact.

My grandfather, Wesley V. Hill, as a young man, served as a medic in World War I.  He was a father of four and 35 years old when he enlisted in the Army during World War II. His job was to run supplies to troops through Iran and other areas of the Middle East. 

To say that every American served in WWII would be an understatement. The home-front did more than its fair share.
My Grandfather, W.V. Hill, directly behind the sign.

My dad, Donald J. Hill enlisted in the Air Force and served in the Korean War.  He was a radar man and an electronics genius. 
My dad, Donald J. Hill, at his post.
Written, in his own hand, on the back of this photo:
"Do I look worried?"
My dad has (had) four brothers. They all served in the military.  William Hill, Robert Hill, Vernon Hill.
My uncle Bill (William) Hill on the left, having a beer with his cousin.
And dad’s youngest brother, Terry Hill, was drafted and sent to Viet Nam. My mom’s youngest brother, Jerry Bacon, was also drafted and served in the Viet Nam War.  As a child, I remember sending cassette tapes of our family’s everyday conversations and of us singing songs and telling stories to my uncles.  We wrote letters and sent pictures to them.  We did everything we could to help them know they were always in our minds and hearts.

After the Viet Nam War, we had a short span of “peace.”  Babies born between say, 1969 and 1979ish were free from The Draft and Selective Service Enrollment.  But that “Peace Time” was profoundly short-lived.

August 1990.  I watched the president’s speech on TV as the Gulf War was declared.  I realized then that our sunny life in American was about to change.  It was feasible that my then four-year-old son could possibly, more than likely, have to go to war when he grew up.  Remember, I grew up during the Viet Nam war. It was a twenty year war. I was distraught over this declaration of war. I cried and held tight to my baby boy.

September 11, 2001.  Al-Qaeda. Taliban. Osama BinLadin. War on Terror. The Taliban.

Our daughter was in her third year of college when she brought home a young man.  Ma’am and Sir were frequently used words in his world. Phil, ROTC at the University of Iowa; he was THE ONE.  When he graduated from college he would be a commissioned Lieutenant in the United States Air Force. He was (and is) a proud American serving his county.  Shortly after he and my daughter were married, he was called up to serve in Afghanistan.  We all breathed easier when he got back home. 
My daughter and her Lt.

My nephew, Jacob served on the front lines Afghanistan.  Our family rallied to make sure he and his family knew they were in our thoughts and prayers the whole time he was deployed. Again, we all breathed easier when he got back home. 
Jacob saying good bye to his wife.

I thank God for my veterans.  I thank my veterans for my county.  God Bless America.
The Bill of Rights
Our legacy. Our fight. Our power.

Below you will find several rights and responsibilities that all citizens should exercise and respect. Some of these responsibilities are legally required of every citizen, but all are important to ensuring that America remains a free and prosperous nation. 



·         Freedom to express yourself.

·         Freedom to worship as you wish.

·         Right to a prompt, fair trial by jury.

·         Right to vote in elections for public officials.

·         Right to apply for federal employment requiring U.S. citizenship.

·         Right to run for elected office.

·         Freedom to pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

·         Support and defend the Constitution.

·         Stay informed of the issues affecting your community.

·         Participate in the democratic process.

·         Respect and obey federal, state, and local laws.

·         Respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others.

·         Participate in your local community.

·         Pay income and other taxes honestly, and on time, to federal, state, and local authorities.

·         Serve on a jury when called upon.

·         Defend the country if the need should arise.