You can find them working in the shops and restaurants you visit every day.
You can find them coaching your child’s ball team.
You can find them in your own neighborhood.
You can find them honoring their own with a final, solemn salute at the Alabama State Veterans Cemetery in Spanish Fort.
Baldwin County is home to thousands of veterans, more than 18,000 during the last census count. They hail from every military branch. They are as old as 100 and as young as 19.
Some served overseas. Some survived fierce battles. Others did the unthinkable in order to allow the rest of us to sleep soundly and safely each night.
Many live with debilitating pain because of their commitment to duty. Others face nightmares that lingered long after the fight.
Every single one deserves our respect and our thanks.
We live. We speak. We travel. We work. We enjoy freedom denied to people in many other places around the world because these men and women stood up to protect it.
This weekend Veterans Day parades and ceremonies will take place across the county. These parades may not be the fanciest, or the place where your kids can catch the most throws. But they are perhaps the most important.
Take your kids to the Veterans Day events in your community. Help them listen to the stories these veterans tell. Help them to understand that their community thrives because these men and women were willing to give their lives to insure it survived.
And most importantly, thank them for their service.