Thanks for Your Service: How to Honor the Veterans in Your Life

It’s become common to turn on the news and hear about a possible attack from another country. While a battle hasn’t been fought on U.S. soil since the 1800s, the threat of war exists.

When the time comes for the U.S. to engage in warfare brave men and women risk their lives to protect us. Thus it is our duty to show support and respect to these individuals.

But how to honor veterans can be tricky because you don’t want to be intrusive or disrespectful. Yet there are ways to show your appreciation any day of the year.

How To Honor Veterans Today

Veteran’s live all over the world. But most people think of them on Veteran’s Day or Memorial Day. Yet many of these men and women return home changed forever.

So it’s important we show our support because without them we wouldn’t be protected. 

Honoring a veteran doesn’t have to be difficult. Sometimes simplicity is best.

Want ideas about honoring veterans? Check out the tips below.

Fly a Flag

Flying a flag is great for showing patriotism and pride in your veterans. Not only is a flag pretty they symbolize what our veterans fought to preserve.

After buying the flag read the directions. The directions describe the correct way to fly the flag. 

Once you’ve familiarized yourself with proper flag etiquette enjoy hanging it for all to see.

Write a Card, Letter or Note

Composing a card, letter or note to a veteran shows you’re appreciative of their efforts. Plus it’s a kind gesture for a veteran to receive a thank you from a civilian because you are the reason he or she became a soldier.

If you don’t know a Veteran use the internet to research ways to send cards or letters. Organizations like A Million Thanks and Soldiers’ Angels specialize in sending cards and letters of encouragement. Contact them for further details.

Attend a Ceremony or Parade

Every year there are ceremonies and parades to commemorate Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day. People come together to celebrate and mourn our soldiers. Whether the soldiers are present, deployed or deceased these holidays hold a special place in our society.

Not satisfied with attending an event? You should volunteer to help. Events like parades and ceremonies take lots of time and effort to happen. Contact the sponsors of the event and see what you can do to help.

If your community isn’t offering an event consider creating one. Finding donations and volunteers shouldn’t be difficult since your event is for a good cause.  

Wear a Lapel Pin

Fashionable ways to honor veterans include wearing lapel pins. These pins come in a colorful variety to support each branch of the U.S. military. 

These military pins are great for special events or everyday use. But when you buy yours be sure to share the love and get them for your friends and family too. They won’t want to be left out.

Make a Donation

When thinking of veterans the image of someone wounded comes to mind. Not all veterans get injured but far too many do. So finding a veteran’s hospital, military medical center, or organization like Wounded Warrior Project to donate shows true appreciation for our brave soldiers.

Sure money is always welcome but there’s plenty of other items you can give too. Donations of the following are welcome:

  • Magazines or Books
  • Toiletries 
  • New clothing like socks, underwear, t-shirts, and hoodies
  • Bags 
  • Ear Buds and chargers
  • Frequent flier miles and hotel points

Making a donation helps a veteran and their families achieve stability.

Speak with a Veteran

Finding the time to speak with a veteran can brighten up their day. However, some don’t want to discuss personal questions about to combat. Thus it’s important to respect the veteran’s privacy. But a conversation shows you have an interest in their service. 

If you are a veteran consider volunteering for Lifeline for Vets a sector of the National Veterans Foundation. This organization offers 24-hour help to veterans who are home or deployed. Lifeline for Vets allows the caller to discuss the fear, depression, and concerns impacting someone serving in the military. But it also offers help to their families and can link them to services for getting housing, employment, and mental health care.

Visit a Veteran’s Hospital

Sometimes veteran’s get hospitalized while receiving treatment and heal. Staying in the hospital can get lonely for anyone even if your family comes to visit. 

Spending time with a veteran will break up the monotony of an otherwise dim day. 

If you’re interested in visiting a veteran’s hospital contact one and ask about visiting hours. Bringing board games, card games, and magazines will give you and the veteran a chance to break the ice and build rapport.

When speaking with hospital personnel ask about donations too. If you considered giving items or money to the veteran’s hospital you can bring it with you.

Send Care Packages

Veterans need our support whether at home, in the hospital, or deployed. A great way to honor veterans is by sending them a care package. 

Organizations who send packages include:

  • Hearts Across the Miles & Ladies of Liberty (Female Deployed Veterans)
  • Ameria’s Adopt a Solider & Treasure Our Troops (Deployed Military Personnel)
  • Operation Rack Pack & Operation Once in a Lifetime (Military Returning Home)
  • Our Heroes’ Journey (Veterans living in nursing facilities and hospitals)

This is not an exhaustive list and there are plenty of organizations who send care packages to veterans.

Know the Difference Between Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day

One of the biggest ways to insult a veteran is not knowing the difference between Veteran’s Day and Memorial Day. Both holidays show our appreciation for the service given by the men and women in the military. 

Veteran’s Day honors all military veteran’s in the U.S. Memorial Day honors veterans who passed away while in the line of duty. 

Knowing what each holiday represents can help you decide how to honor the veterans and not unintentionally insult one.

Choose What’s Best for You 

Now that you know how to honor veterans you can get creative about what you intend to do. Whatever you decide remember that veterans enjoy the recognition for their duty. If your gesture comes from the heart it will fill your veterans’ with joy.

Enjoyed this article on ways to honor a veteran? Keep checking out our website for more interesting topics.

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