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Mike Pence honors hero dad on Veteran’s Day

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Mike Pence honors hero dad on Veteran’s Day

Post  Admin on Mon 13 Nov 2017, 11:54 pm

Mike Pence honors hero dad on Veteran’s Day
November 12, 2017
Mike Pence honors hero dad on Veteran’s Day
mark reinstein / Shutterstock.com
In a speech at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia, on Saturday, Vice President Mike Pence shared a message that was equally inspiring and heartbreaking.

“I’ve never experienced the cost of war on the battlefield, or had to endure the hardship of time away from home and family that come with service, even in peacetime. But I’ve seen enough to know the burden our veterans bear is oftentimes a burden that lives far beyond your time in uniform,” Pence said, referring to his father, who he said never fully recovered from his time in the U.S. Army.

Son of a soldier
Pence tells the story:

Sixty-four years ago my dad served in combat in Korea. Second Lieutenant Edward J. Pence was in the U.S. Army, 45th Infantry. He fought in the battle of Old Baldy and Pork Chop Hill, and he earned a bronze star for his courage under fire.
But according to Pence, he didn’t learn that from his father. It was his cousin who shared the truth about the elder Pence:

Dad never talked about the war, and that medal stayed in his dresser drawer. A few years after he died, I was visiting a cousin that he grew up with on the streets of Chicago, and he told me that the war had changed my dad. When I asked him how, he said, “You know, before the war, your dad was the most happy-go-lucky guy I ever met.” But he said after he came back he was different.

He said, and I quote, “I don’t think your dad ever got over the guilt of comin’ home.”
Hidden guilt
Suddenly, everything he knew about his father made sense, Pence said. He continued:

In those words, in an instant, I understood every unfinished sentence, every faraway look on my father’s face whenever the war came up. If he talked about it at all, he talked about the guys he served with — guys who didn’t get to come home, to marry their sweetheart, raise a house full of kids, live their dreams and see their children’s children.
“That’s when I understood the quiet cost of freedom,” Pence revealed to the crowd, “and the burden so many of our veterans bear in their hearts.”
He continued by speaking directly to the nation’s veterans.

He said:

So to all our veterans looking on, know this: We’re with you. You do not carry that burden alone. As a nation, we stand ready to help you shoulder that load, with the compassion, support and prayers of the American people. You were there for us. Now we are here for you.
Watch the vice president’s full speech here:

A morning of service
Prior to speaking during Arlington’s annual wreath-laying ceremony, Pence joined about 40 volunteers to scrub the dirt and grime off the granite Vietnam Veteran’s War Memorial.

His dedication to honoring the fallen heroes was evident as he worked nonstop in the cold early morning hours for about 40 minutes, dressed in casual jeans and boots.

Although he never wore the uniform, the vice president exhibited Saturday that he understands the hardships experienced by our veterans. With that, we can be assured that he’ll do everything in his power to take care of our heroes after they return home.

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