Veterans' Day 2012
Last Veterans' Day, I wrote a lengthy post about my father, Chaplain (Colonel) Mitchell Ackerson, and praised his Army service. This Veterans' Day, while the sentiment towards my father's service has not changed, I want to instead call attention to two other veterans in my family: My father's father, Leonard Ackerson, and my cousin, Jeremy Hammer.
I must admit that I don't know all that much about my grandfather's military service. I know (or at least remember) that he served during World War II, but I can't tell you what branch or what his missions were like. I have a faint memory from when I was about 12 reading a book in my grandfather's house that had a picture of his unit and more details. I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I had almost completly forgotten he was a veteran before I started writing this post, so I resolve this Veterans Day to learn more about his military history so that I can honor him properly in the future. In the meantime, I can only hope this suffices.
I also want to honor my cousin, Jeremy Hammer. Jeremy served in Afghanistan with Explosive Ordinance Disposal, US Army. In layman's terms, that means he dealt with things that go boom. EOD is a dangerous job but a necessary one. Soldiers in EOD risk their lives to ensure their fellow soldiers don't come to harm. They're about as close to "being on the front line" as you can get with this kind of war. While Jeremy assures me and my family that his job was boring and he didn't get to do all that much, the fact that he was willing to be in that division speaks volumes.
And of course, to all the other veterans in our country, I honor you as well, for your sacrifices, your dedication, and your service.