Non-Combat Veterans' Service is Vital to Our Military

by Scott Turner
(So. Deerfield, MA)

For the longest time I didn't consider myself a Veteran, because I didn't serve during war time, 1981-1984. I come from families that served during wars beginning with WWI.

Although I could not comprehend the reasons for the wars as a child, everything changed as a young adult. To me, it became a commitment to what this country stood for.

My views have changed on things and I now consider myself a Veteran. I might not have seen action, but I did serve my country. My Flag flies daily.

A very special Thank you to everyone who has served. I truly think that's what built this country.

In closing, I'd like to pass along a comment my Dad said to me as a child, "If I was younger, I'd do it all over again!"

Right back at you Dad!

Scott, thank you for your service, and for that of your fathers before you.

Like you, I'm very proud of my family's history of service to this country, beginning with the American Revolution. I just recently learned about that in doing genealogy research. I wasn't aware of that history when I was on active duty.

Everyone who serves plays an important role in our military. Without training, support, admin, and logistics, our war fighters would be unable to do their jobs.

Many people recognize combat veterans as somehow "better" or "more worthy" than other veterans, including some veterans, such as yourself.

But none of those other billets are there for fluff. They exist because those functions are necessary in order for our military to be properly trained and supplied, and to function properly. I think most combat veterans recognize that, but sometimes civilians do not.

My service was also not combat service, but I have no doubt that my role as a JAG officer, helping to maintain good order and discipline, and helping military families with legal issues, was valuable to the overall effort, as is the case with everyone who serves.

My husband, who is a Vietnam combat veteran, often says, "If they'd take me, I'd go do it again." So we understand your dad's comment.

I'm happy to see you have realized that all service is important, whether or not it is combat service. We must keep our military trained and ready, even in times of peace.

As President Reagan said, the best way to accomplish peace is by having a strong military that no one dares to challenge:

"Peace through Strength."

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