Well Earned Rewards!

You are going to think that my husband and I eat out all the time. We do eat out a lot, but not all the time. I’m afraid if we didn’t eat out we’d miss ideas for shirlandyou. It so happened, as we sat in a restaurant, that this week’s

In a restaurant, one never knows who may sit beside them.

In a restaurant, one never knows who may sit beside them.

subjects for shirlandyou walked up and sat at a table next to us. They were two young, handsome, and highly decorated, soldiers. Thinking of our grandson, I said to them, “Are you in the Marines.” They were in the Army.(I’m very poor at recognizing the different service uniforms.)

“The two of you must have earned every award there is,” I said. Their response to this remark was a deep blush in their faces. I thought I could make up for my blunder about what service they represented by taking the

What the bars and stripes represent was not revealed.

What the bars and stripes represent is left to be known.

opportunity to thank them for what they were doing for our country. And so I did. Then, I noticed that nearly everyone passing their table did the same thing, as they told them how grateful they were for their involvement in the armed forces. I was glad they did that.

In the booth behind us sat two elderly women, who chatted and enjoyed lunch together. What was to come was a very touching moment. One of them went over to the soldiers’ table and gave each of them some

The cash was carefully folded.

The cash was carefully folded.

carefully folded bills. (cash) With a blush of color again on their faces, the soldiers tried to say, “don’t do that.” But she insisted and returned to her table.When she rose to leave, so did the two men to give her a hug for her show of gratitude. I have a feeling that what she did was one of their most appreciated awards.

I didn’t ask their names or why they were in formal uniform. Maybe a parade was scheduled or an event to honor them or someone else they served with. And, of course, I didn’t ask what each stripe or pin represented. I did read what one of today’s servicemen says about the decorations they receive. I’m sure he, too, gets warm flashes of face

The V for valor award is to the left.

The V for valor award is to the left.

color, when people act impressed. He said that today’s soldiers get medals just for showing up and breathing. I’m sure he was being modest. He did mention that awards with a “V” device (for valor) were held in high esteem. Then he remembered that some World War II veterans came home with less than two full rows of ribbons, and he said this was quite different from today, meaning they should have been awarded much more.

This soldier was brushing off the award system, but we know that many awards are earned because of distinguished service. Robert Lewis

Col. Robert L. Howard

Col. Robert L. Howard

Howard, a highly decorated United States Army soldier, was a Medal of Honor recipient of the Vietnam War. Such award was well earned. He was wounded 14 times over 54 months of combat, was awarded 8 Purple Hearts, 4 Bronze Stars and was nominated for the medal of Honor three separate times. His Army career spanned thirty six years and, in 1992, he retired as a Colonel. And although he remained safe during his tours of duty, in 2009, he died of cancer at the age of 70. He lays at rest in the Arlington National Cemetery.

Audie Leon Murphy was one of the most famous and decorated American combat soldiers of World War II. He always maintained that his medals

Audie Murphy in full uniform

Audie Murphy in full uniform

belonged to his entire military unit. You may have seen this soldier in the movies. After the war, he enjoyed a 21 year career as an actor. Most of his 44 films were Westerns. We like to think that his medals and ribbons were sufficient awards for the sacrifices and suffering he made while serving. However, his suffering continued. In later years, Audie was labeled with post-traumatic stress disorder and slept with a loaded gun under his pillow.

No, our servicemen deserve any praise they may receive. I am reminded of this each time I see the TV commercial about the “Wounded Warrior Project,” a mission to honor and empower Wounded Warriors of the U. S. Armed Forces. My heart sinks each time I Soldiers 8view it, I get a lump in my throat and tears well up in my eyes. What rewards are given can’t begin to pay them for their service to our country and for physical and mental injuries, illness and wounds suffered, not only during combat duty, but after as well. What are your thoughts on this? I hope you’ll write to ShirlandYou.

4 thoughts on “Well Earned Rewards!

  1. Those that sacrifice the most for our Country are the men and women serving in our military. These enlisted men and women aren’t the only ones who are sacrificing…..their families also give up give up allot. For every young man and woman in the military, there is a mom and dad and other family members that pray for their safety and worry about them. One of my son’s good friends (Zach) will be leaving for the air force soon. Dominick and his friends made sure to spend a night out with their good friend before he leaves for boot camp. In all of history, war has always been there and people have fought and died for their beliefs. I am thankful for our servicemen, and I pray that God watches over them and keeps them safe. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we lived in a world that was free of hatred and war?

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    • Thanks Colleen for writing. As long as there is sin, there will be hatred and war. You are right about the whole family being affected and in prayer.
      Best wishes to Zach.and his family.

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  2. My husband and I eat breakfast out every morning…lite and healthy. Sometimes a kind and appreciative person will buy his breakfast because he is a WWII Vet. It touches him and me. He didn’t get a welcome home from war…but people are making up for that now. WWII Vets did come home with a great deal of baggage and a 50 year gag. Once the 50 years was up and he was able to talk about his horrific experiences…healing began. Allan could not use an alarm clock when he first came home. He jumped out a window the first time. It’s heartwarming to know people really do care. There are not many WWII Vets left and they are dying each day. I’m greatful mine is still healthy at age 88…soon to be 89. I too thank our military and thier families for the sacrific they make on our behalf. The response of the human spirit is humbling…!!

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