July 2018 Report
My last couple of articles has brought responses from several members ranging from Thailand to the west and Michigan and points in between. All of your thoughts have been shared with staff and the entire board of directors and actions have been taken on every single response that you send to me. We want you to continue sharing your feedback.
July starts with the annual celebration of our freedom and the birth of our nation. July 4th is when many of us participate in patriotic parades, family BBQ’s and fireworks displays. I remember when I was deployed to Iraq in 2005, our base had a contest. All units were provided a copy of the Declaration of Independence. All units were to read it to the troops, sign a muster and turn it into the base chaplain. What a way to help our citizens, or troops in this example, remember what the 4th of July is all about. We stand a little taller when the flag goes by in a parade and puff out our chests a bit when a military formation of jets flies over our parade.
Our nation isn’t perfect, but it is what we make of it and for all that have served, our time in uniform should have or still does make us proud. Service whether in uniform or out brings out a sense of pride that we will hopefully pass on to our next generation. Have you sat down and spent any time reflecting on the feelings that we had when serving alongside of our brothers and sisters in uniform. The comradeship we formed with those we served alongside will last a lifetime. The same goes for service outside of uniform. Contributing to the improvement of your community is one way that you can make a difference today.
We see so much disruption in our communities and yearn for order to our lives. My question to you is what can or will you do about it? In the military it was simple. Our leadership developed a plan and within the organization we executed that plan. Now you are no longer in that unit. You ask yourself what can I do about it? You were a noncommissioned or petty officer in the military and by definition were the ones who most often made things happen. Take that training and experience use it to positively impact your community. If conditions are disruptive enough that you spend time dwelling on the situation then why not do something to make it more palatable. We don’t need to and should not resort to any kind of physical confrontation, but there are ways to make a positive impression and change hearts.
Have you worked with youth groups and taken the time to explain why you have patriotic feelings? Have you taken the time to explain why the flag means so much to you? Have you explained to your friends and co-workers what it means to serve your country and that when you signed up, you committed to support and defend the constitution at a potential cost of up to and including your own life? Many who have never served don’t know and understand that. Perhaps veterans need to educate the public and just maybe we can turn things around in this country.
NCOA is an organization that was created to take care of quality of life for our enlisted forces. Helping to maintain that same quality after we separate is just as important. Start by getting involved in the solution today. Sitting on the sidelines and doing nothing is part of the problem. I want to hear from you. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org. Failure is not an option!