On Nov. 11, many marked the official observance of the Veterans Day holiday to honor American war veterans.
The impetus for the original holiday was the commemoration of the World War I armistice between the Allies and Germany that ceased fighting at the "11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month."
Our nation honored the greater cause of world peace by observing "Armistice" Day every Nov. 11 following the end of the Great War. After exceptional American sacrifice during both WW II and the Korean conflict, Congress passed legislation in 1954 officially observing Nov. 11 as "Veterans" Day to honor all of America's war veterans.
Our nation has taken great strides ever since to properly honor those who have served, and who are currently serving. I would like to personally extend my gratitude to the many people who have taken the time to thank me for my service, send care packages, or who have actively given me support during my 12 years of service. Despite my extremely positive personal experiences, I do have a concern: donor fatigue. We have been a nation at war for more than nine years and as memories of the attacks of 9/11 fade, so too does the interest of the American public.
This is not to say that the American public doesn't support our troops. To the contrary, any poll clearly shows that despite waning support for our involvement in Iraq or Afghanistan, the American public very strongly supports our men and women in uniform. My concern is that the attention span of the average American is relatively short and most news tied to the "Long War" has been relegated to the back page.
Unless they personally know someone serving, the average American is relatively unaffected day-to-day by our ongoing involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is no requirement for the American populace to ration food or materials. There is no draft requiring sons and daughters to go off into harm's way. The economy is relatively unaffected, for now, since we have paid our way on borrowed money with repeated supplemental funding through Congress. All this allows the average American to casually get involved, or remain uninvolved, as desired. As we observed Veterans Day last month, I ask that you do not let this observance serve only as a short-term spike in interest. Let this observance serve as an opportunity to renew active efforts to support our troops and our veterans.
Tens of thousands are currently deployed, away from their families and living in harm's way under austere conditions.
Send a care package, write a letter, visit veterans at a VA hospital, donate to a veterans' charity, or simply pray for those serving in combat zones around the world. Their sacrifice is worth the effort and they will greatly appreciate your generosity.
Thank you to all who have personally given me support over the years, and thank you to all who continue to actively support our troops.
Adam Czekanski is stationed in Fort Leavenworth, Kan, and a graduate of Silver Creek Central Schools and Cornell University.