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Stand tall, proud for serving

BUCKLEY AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- If you turn on the television or the radio you can hear about the tragic loses we are suffering in places like Iraq and Afghanistan.

With the election year upon us everyone wants to have their say, and the critics will say it. But I ask you, do the critics ever stop to think about those that are living in the trenches, those who are putting it on the line each and everyday of their lives? I hardly think so.

I think President Theodore Roosevelt in his speech given in Paris at Sorbonne in 1910 stated it best, "It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the greats enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat."

While everything has not gone as planned in our Global War on Terror and often we have had setbacks along the way, we in the military have not given up hope. We proudly hold our heads high and strive to do what is right for our fellow man and defend everything we hold dear. We are a force that has stepped forward at first light and never looked back. To all those who choose to serve in the military, I want to say thank you. Thank you for wanting to defend what makes this nation so great, to defend everyone's right to have their say, to defend each person's right to freedom and for honorably serving our nation.

One would think that with all the problems we have at home the least they could do is show a united front and support those that are in the trenches and standing up for what makes this nation great.

I say to my fellow comrades-in- arms, "Stand tall and straight, because no matter what anyone says, we will never be one of those cold and timid souls."

I for one am proud and honored to have been able to answer the call of my country and I salute each and every one of our young men and women that decide to don this uniform and provide the ultimate sacrifice. May each and every one of us feel the call and stand proudly the test of time.

I will leave you with this final thought from Albert Einstein, "The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing."

Are you willing to stand by?