MILITARY: Serve proudly and sacrifice
I am writing this letter to the young Americans who graduated from high school this year. Congratulations on your accomplishment! You have the right to be proud, and I know you are looking forward with excitement to the next phase of your lives. Now I have a challenge, and an opportunity, for you. I challenge each one of you to make a small sacrifice for our great nation — join the military.
Our nation was founded by sacrifice and made great by sacrifice. True, our free market economy and entrepreneurial spirit have propelled us to become the world’s economic leader, but it was sacrifice made by Americans that has protected and defended our way of life. Sacrifice made possible your rights and opportunities, and continued sacrifice is needed to maintain them. If you wonder why our nation is struggling these days, I submit that it's because too few are sacrificing and serving.
Our nation needs you. Please, make the decision to spend a few short years serving in our military; a chance to give back for all the opportunities this nation provides for you. I can assure you from my personal experience that you will find a fulfillment from serving rarely experienced elsewhere. Because that’s what sacrifice truly provides — personal fulfillment.
And if you choose to serve you will discover that what you receive from your sacrifice is far greater than what you give. It’s just the way sacrifice is.
MAJOR ERIC VANDEWEG
Coeur d’Alene High School class of 1989
(Now residing in Sierra Vista, Ariz.)