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  • Monday, November 11, 2019

    Thank You for Your Selfless Service

    Veterans Day Hug
    A Veterans Day Message

    Medal of Honor recipient David Bellavia rescued an infantry squad that was pinned down by machine gun fire. Staff Sgt. Bellavia’s actions during a pre-dawn mission on Nov. 10, 2004, made him the Iraq War’s first living recipient of the military’s highest award for valor.

    Putting himself in harm’s way to save other soldiers is what sets him apart. But while his valor is exceptional, his mindset is common within the women and men who serve our great nation.

    Like Army Private First Class Monica Lin Brown. Pfc. Brown was a combat medic assigned to the 82nd Airborne Division when she was deployed to Paktika Province, Afghanistan.

    On April 25, 2007, a roadside bomb tore through her convoy, wounding five soldiers. After the explosion, 19-year-old Brown ran through insurgent gunfire and used her body to shield her wounded comrades while mortars fell less than 100 yards away.

    The military said her “bravery, unselfish actions and medical aid rendered under fire saved the lives of her comrades.”

    Her actions led her to become the first woman to earn the Silver Star in Afghanistan, and just the second woman to do so since World War II.

    Veterans all have stories to tell, whether they were in combat or not. Every single woman and man who has raised their right hand and pledged to give their life for their country if needed, did so for a reason. Ask them why.

    Veterans find community in each other. Call it comradery, esprit de corps, or whatever. They find it at American Legion posts and in unit Facebook groups.

    For the past one hundred years, The American Legion has been dedicated to serving those who have served. The commitment to caring for America’s veterans is one that transcends partisanship. It is a commitment that covers all races. All genders. And all faiths. The American Legion knows that service doesn’t stop when the uniform comes off.

    Thank you for your selfless service.

    — American Legion Department of New York