Every year on Nov. 11, we celebrate Veterans Day. What people don’t understand is that it’s not just a day off from school or work. It’s the one day a year where we all can do something to honor the men and women who fought for our country and risked their lives, or lost theirs. These people fought to protect us, but still on Nov. 11 very few of us actually get up and honor them the right way.

There are so many veterans out there and around 5 million of them live with a disability. Not only did they fight to keep us from harm, but several of them came back with injuries. More than a million World War II veterans are still alive, but soon they won’t be here. Their stories last only so long, and it’s better to hear the tales ourselves than to hear them from another person.

On Oct. 22, I and several other students went to the Cole Land Transportation Museum in Bangor. While we were there, we got to spend time with a veteran. We sat down and we talked with him for about an hour, and when it was over, I wished we had more time. When you hear veterans speak for themselves, it’s unbelievable. The stories they tell, the things they’ve seen, can be described only by their own words.

The little things we do for our veterans can make a big difference. Just by walking up to veteran and just saying thank you, they’ll know you mean it. They’ll appreciate it because they’ll know they made a difference.

Gracie VicenteOakland