It is in vain, sir, to extenuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace–but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!

– Patrick Henry
March 23, 1775

My dad, Charles W. Gardner, was a United States Naval Air Force veteran of the Korean War. My father in law, Reagan Ferguson, was a United States Navy Seabees veteran of World War II. My brother, John Gardner, was a veteran of several wars and conflicts having served in the United States Navy in many capacities and special ops units . I have other uncles, cousins, and family members that have served for many years.

Today I want to say thank you to all that have served. I love the country I live in and the freedom that God has given us through the noble sacrifice of many, many, men and women.

I do not have the words nor way to say thank you but to say it as humbly as I know. I have never served in the military but I have certainly enjoyed the benefits of their sacrifice.

Thank you.

This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave.
Elmer Davis