Every Day is Memorial Day by Dave Falkner

We remember the words of President Lincoln:  November 19, 1863, Gettysburg, PA, when he offered these words in his speech.  “… we cannot consecrate—we cannot hallow—this ground.  The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it.  The world … cannot forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to unfinished work which they who fought here have thus so far nobly advanced.  It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead, we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last measure of devotion….”  We must hold those words close every day to more fully remember our Veterans, both living and dead.

Every day should be a time when we show our appreciation for the men and women who have served their country in the United States military.   It is never too late to say thank you!   It is never too late to offer simple acts of gratitude when we see and recognize a Veteran.  At Emblem Hospice, we are reminded of this every day as we work with Veterans who have been placed in a Hospice setting.  We must help them know their service was not in vain and that they are appreciated.

  • 25% of all deaths in the U.S. are Veterans
  • More than 1,800 Veterans die each day
  • The VA cares for a minority of Veterans at the end of life, and 96% die in the community
  • 26 million veterans are alive today
  • 1% of Veterans live in Arizona
  • WWII Veterans are dying at a rate of more than 500 a day

Many of us have little direct contact with military members who are serving or have served our country.  We can certainly recognize a man/woman in uniform or wearing a baseball cap printed with their service information and say,  “Thank you for your service.”  If you have a moment, consider asking a thoughtful question or two and listen to their story.  Maybe they will surprise you with how much they appreciate your interest.  A question might help them see that your words are genuine and your gratitude for their service—great.

At Emblem Hospice- Tucson, we have created a Veteran-centric culture, recognizing the unique needs of Veterans and gratefully acknowledging their service.  To insure that this happens in our community, we eagerly seek additional volunteers to help by heightening the impact of appreciation from one Veteran to another.   We need to find other ways to reach out to each Veteran and have them feel that they are appreciated.   If you are interested in being more committed to our Veterans, consider reaching out to Emblem Hospice, J. Stafford, Volunteer Coordinator, (520) 297-1460,  2292 W. Magee Road, Suite 200.    Accept that you can give time to become a volunteer and receive some special training to help our Veterans and show them you really do care about their sacrifice and service.

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