This Veteran’s Day, I want to take the time to acknowledge all the military heroes who have sacrificed so much to make our country safe. My late husband, 1st Lt. James L. Hull, is one of those American heroes. He was killed nearly 50 years ago, while on a combat mission during the Vietnam War.
We will always remember him.
Our active-duty military and veterans, that have served at home and overseas, often serve amid adverse circumstances while separated from their families and friends. We must never forget them and their families, and the sacrifices they’ve made on our behalf.
While many families spend Veteran’s Day acknowledging their loved ones who have served, it’s also important to remember there are thousands of veterans still struggling to survive in this country today. Take time today to keep in mind that thousands of U.S. military veterans struggle with mental health problems, addiction and/or homelessness. They so desperately need our assistance and constant outreach.
This week, the USA Today editorial board (“This Veterans Day, know that the U.S. military is losing to the war called suicide”) took time to discuss a very troubling but important issue related to our veterans, the increasing rate of suicide since 2003. In 2018, 325 active-duty troops died by suicide, far outpacing the civilian suicide rate. The recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have spurred an alarming suicide epidemic among veterans that needs to be addressed.
A large contingent of our troops come home from overseas conflicts with mental health challenges that are hard to overcome. Providing these veterans with a helping hand, and the treatment they deserve, is how we can show how much we care on Veteran’s Day.
© Tyra Manning 2019