My nine-year old daughter wrote this essay:
October 26, 2012
Veteranʼs Day is an important day for me and my family. Most people do not understand what Veteranʼs Day is about. They think it is just another holiday. They do not take it seriously. I would like more people to realize how important it is. Veteranʼs Day is a day that we honor all soldiers, sailors, airmen, and marines who have served in combat. It is a day we also honor their families. The families of Veterans make big sacrifices. I think that people would understand this better if they tried putting themselves in my shoes. I am the daughter of a Veteran.
My father is in the Army. He has been deployed three times since I was born. He is deployed right now in Afghanistan. I have to do without him for almost a year. I miss him every day, but especially on my birthday, Christmas, Thanksgiving, Halloween, and Fatherʼs Day. Every night at supper, his chair is empty. If something breaks, he is not here to fix it. He is not here to be at my school events. He wonʼt be here to hang the Christmas lights. He wonʼt be here to carve pumpkins. He is not here to do yardwork. He is not here if we have car trouble. He is not here to tell me goodnight. He is not here to be strong. My mother is alone, taking care of me and my sister. She has to do her job and run my fatherʼs business for him. My grandma helps out when she can, but she is nothing like my father.
I wear a pin every day. My mom wears one, too. She gave it to me the day he left. They are called Blue Star pins. These pins are worn by immediate family members of military people who are currently serving in active duty combat. When these pins or flags have one star, it means that only one family member is deployed. When they have two stars, they have two family members deployed. Each star stands for one family member, so the number of stars on the pin or flag is the same number as the family members that are deployed. We also have a flag hanging on our front window that has the same symbol. It lets everyone who sees it know that my dad is deployed. We will take our Blue Star flag down and put our Blue Star pins away when my dad finally comes home. Until then, I wear it with pride.
I honor Veteranʼs Day every year for all of these reasons but mainly because I respect our countryʼs heroes, and their families. These heroes that are fighting today are our fathers, brothers, mothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, daughters, and sons. These heroes who have fought wars in the past are our grandfathers, grandmothers, and even our neighbors. Respecting these people is our duty as a loyal country. Honoring these people and their sacrifices is my job. I am the daughter of a hero. I am the daughter of a Veteran.
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