The brave men and women who have served in our Armed Forces are always deserving of thanks. We owe them gratitude every day, every month, and every year. This Veterans Day, I want to take this opportunity to pay special tribute to veterans in Ohio and across the country.
Ohio is home to almost 800,000 veterans. That is 800,000 brave men and women who make sacrifices in the name of freedom and democracy. In turbulent times, it is both humbling and hopeful to revere these individuals. We should extend our heartfelt appreciation to those who have served in our Armed Forces, as it is because of their sacrifices that we are able to enjoy fundamental freedoms.
Even still, the service of our veterans is not limited to the battlefield. Ohio’s veterans are exemplary citizens - small business owners, doctors, legislators and teachers. The remarkable contributions of veterans to their communities are part of what makes Ohio a great place to live. Individuals like these, in Ohio and across the country, have used their passion for service to better their communities.
Today, we should also recognize the families and friends of our veterans. It takes great strength for a parent to explain to their child why their mother or father is missing their piano recital or football game. Friends and family worry about their loved ones in service - this also requires courage and resiliency. Though it does not occur on the battlefield, this courage is a form of patriotism.
I have a family member and several close friends currently serving our country, as do most people. Today affords us the opportunity to reach out to these people and their families expressing our sincerest appreciation. Some of our military heroes have made the ultimate sacrifice on the battlefield. If this is the case, honor their memory with a moment of silence.
I extend my deepest gratitude to all the men and women who have defended our flag. We honor you for your courage and commitment to our nation, today and every day.