We are all wounded...
Veterans; we come in all shapes and sizes. We are black and white. We are young and old. We are rich and poor. We come from all walks of life and from all over the Globe. We share one common bond, however. We never stop fighting. We are taught from the time we step off the bus at Fort Knox or Fort Jackson or whatever Post we end up in to start basic training, that the first skill is never give up! Sometimes we need to be reminded that we are not the only ones who served. We are not the only ones who suffered. We should look at our brothers and sisters before us and celebrate those, who in spite of great tragedy, became leaders, became legends and became heroes. It is up to us now more than ever to remember we are all hurting. I have yet to meet a Veteran who is not in some sort of pain. Maybe it’s a bad knee from a forced ruck march that continues to make you limp and becomes oppressive and demoralizing at times. Maybe it’s thoughts of I.E.Ds that haunt you as you drive through your neighborhood. Maybe it’s the nightmares that seem to never end and the fact that every time you step outside you do a Sniper check. Whatever your wound it is crucial to remember that we are all wounded. It is up to those of us that have the ability to keep fighting to fight in the place of the ones who have been taken out of the fight by injury. So before you say “I can’t” remember that we made a promise. Remember that we took an oath “No man left behind.”
Oliver Stone: This Oscar-winning filmmaker began his first novel while at Yale, a project that eventually caused him to fail out of school. This would turn out to be a poor decision as the text was rejected by publishers and was not published until 1998, at which time it was not well-received. After dropping out of school, Stone moved to Vietnam to teach English, later enlisting in the Army and fighting in the war, a battle that earned him two Purple Hearts and helped him find the inspiration for his later works that often center around war.