I remember as a young child seeing a man at the store handing out poppies. The younger me desperately wanted one, but the man did not approach me, and instead handed the poppy to my grandfather, who took it proudly, and placed it in his lapel. When I asked him about it, he said "I wear it because I'm a veteran." The rest of our trip to the store, he was met with nods and handshakes. In the Internet era, we don't have so many tokens like these, but we do still remember. These Instagram captions for Veterans Day are perhaps not the modern day equivalent of a poppy in a lapel, but are nevertheless a small gesture of thanks to the brave soldiers who have served so faithfully.
Instagram is our generation's means of expressing ourselves. To previous generations, it may seem silly or trite, but to us, it's all we know. We were raised on the Internet, and social media is something few of us have eschewed. It makes sense that we would value the words and images expressed in these posts as a means to connect with those to whom we are so very grateful. Most citizens of our country will never understand the depth of heroism and strength of character that it takes to serve our nation, and that is by design. They do it because they are equipped where we are not. They do it for us, and simplistic as it may be, small gestures like crafting Instagram captions for Veterans Day can mean something.
Although, I also encourage you to reach out, thank a veteran personally, and consider donating to a veterans' assistance charity on top of your words of gratitude.
1. For all that you did, for all we could not do, thank you.
A simple thank you can sometimes go a long, long way.
2. “The nicest veterans... the kindest and funniest ones, the ones who hated war the most, were the ones who'd really fought.” ― Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse-Five
It makes sense: Those who've been through the reality of war know that it should be avoided at all costs.
3. No matter the obstacle, no matter the risk, you were there, and for that I am grateful.
We have so very much to be grateful for when it comes to our veterans.
4. One directly from the Army...
5. No man is left behind, and no citizen is left ungrateful. Thank you for your service.
Soldiers have each others' backs, on and off the combat field.
6. Freedom is never free.
You've seen this quote many times, many places, but the truth behind it is unavoidable: Veterans paid a high price for the freedom we're all lucky to have.
7. All gave some, some gave all, and we all give thanks for your heroism.
8. Yesterday, today, tomorrow, and forever we will be thankful for all of your hardships, bravery, and sacrifices so that we may live free.
9. “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them." ― John F. Kennedy
Kennedy's "Thanksgiving Proclamation" of 1963 was a stirring reminder: Veterans deserve our appreciation and support.
10. We are Earth’s best, that learnt her lesson here. Life is our cry. 'We have kept the faith!’ we said; ‘We shall go down with unreluctant tread Rose-crowned into the darkness!’
From the Rupert Brook poem "The Hill," written in the beginning of the Twentieth Century.
11. Fac fortia et patere.
"Do brave deeds and endure." Nothing more true of veterans than that statement.
12. "In war there are no unwounded soldiers." ― Jose Narosky
A quote from his book The Paperbark Tree, Jose Narosky's words are tragically true, and so important to remember.
13. For the few and the proud from the many and the thankful, words cannot adequately express our profound gratitude for your service and dedication to our freedoms.
Of course, no one should forget our hard-working canine vets. They deserve appreciation too.
15. "He's still a soldier/ His blood runs red, white and blue/ He put away his gun and boots/ But he still believes The American Dream/ 'Til his last breath he'll always be A soldier/ He's still a soldier."
From "Still a Soldier" by Trace Adkins.
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