When I need a jarring reminder that my "bad days" aren't that bad, there are several "places" I can go: the slow death of one of my aunts from brain cancer, the lingering death of my father from congestive heart failure, and so on.
Last Friday, I participated in a event, that I had only watched from a distance before, that adds to the list. The 2011 induction ceremony of the Ohio Military Hall of Fame.
All of these veterans honored last week were lucky to make it home alive, but what distinguishes the Class of 2011 from other service veterans is that they were decorated for Valor. They weren't just "there," but risked their lives for a greater objective.
I was honored to serve as Master of Ceremonies for the 2011 ceremony last Friday at the Ohio Statehouse. Listening to the citations, and pondering those actions described while standing just feet from most of these men or their families, brings it all back home. When I think I am having a bad day, it is nothing compared to the significant sacrifice of their youth, whether it was in one of the world wars, Korea, Vietnam, the Gulf War, or the Global War On Terror.
To the Board of Directors of the OMHOF, thank you for honoring me by asking me to emcee the event. It is a day I will never forget.
And of these honorees, we should never forget how they fought for our freedoms, and the reminder it gives us of the men and women who sacrifice right now (often in anonymity) who are fighting for our freedoms in faraway places even today.