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Pody's column: A day to pay tribute to veterans

Nov. 11 we celebrate Veteran's Day, a day to honor our brave men and women who left their homes and families to protect the freedoms we take for granted. Many came home while others paid the supreme sacrifice.

During the year, you can spot a veteran at a parade or event. When the flag passes by they remove their hat, stand taller and place their hand over their heart or salute. At a parade last summer, I watched a veteran in a wheelchair who struggled to stand up and salute when Old Glory passed by.

It was a veteran who sang "God Bless America" during the seventh-inning stretch of Game 6 of the World Series in St. Louis. He, like most veterans, came home after serving but continue to serve in the community for a lifetime.

Recently we read about VFWs and American Legion Clubs experiencing financial struggles. They are located in cities, suburbs and small towns. They are so important, providing a gathering place for social events.

While many people think of these clubs, as a Good Old Boys Club, they don't realize how important the clubs are and just how much their volunteer members give back to their communities. Education in the form of scholarships, school patrols, donations to school activities, the community for senior programs, children and youth, food supplies for needy in addition to many veterans programs. They sponsor a baseball program for young men in the community. They build parks and clean roads and ditches. These are only a few things where local volunteers make a big difference in our lives.

Many organizations will honor veterans Nov. 11 with a breakfast, lunch or dinner. Some will have a program of music, words of thanks to these men and women who gave so much and now retired just keep on giving.

If you are a veteran, check with the organization in your area. You earned it and we owe you for it.

God bless our veterans.