We didn?t intend this issue to be a special focus on veterans, but the coincidental timing of our front-page stories on Marvin Rediker and his Honor Flight experience, and Pete Richert and his experiences at the inaugural Warrior Open golf tournament, touch on a similar theme that stands as a good reminder for all of us at any time of the year: Our war veterans appreciate being appreciated for their service to our country.

The circumstances are contrasting. Rediker, the World War II veteran, is part of what literally has become a dying breed. It?s estimated that some 1,100 of these vets are dying each day. That our nation did not have a memorial to honor their sacrifices until 2004 speaks both of their humility and our neglect.

Richert, meanwhile, is just entering the prime years of his life. Though his war may not be as broadly embraced as Rediker?s, there seems to be a greater awareness in our culture of the sacrifices he and others have made to heed the call of service they believe to be just as noble and valuable.

Showing appreciation doesn?t have to be a grand event. A simple ?thank-you? goes a long way. ?DR

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