It can be hard to find the right words to give proper thanks to the men and women who serve our country each and every day, but these patriotic quotes for Veterans Day, uttered by some of our country's greatest patriots, are a good place to start. America's servicemen and women who dedicate their lives to protecting our country are among our best and bravest, and while we should always show our appreciation, Veterans Day in particular is a perfect occasion to express our gratitude.
But first, a little background for those of us with only vague memories of our middle school Veterans Day assemblies who might be a little fuzzy on the details — Veterans Day is celebrated on Nov. 11 as a way to honor veterans who have served or are currently serving in America's Armed Forces. (Memorial Day, on the other hand, honors those who have died fighting for our country.) Initially, Nov. 11 was celebrated in America as Armistice Day following World War I, but in 1954 President Dwight D. Eisenhower officially marked the date as Veterans Day, opening it up to be inclusive of all United States veterans.
Today, let these patriotic quotes inspire you to reach out to the veterans in your life — whether they be family members or people in your community — and say thanks.
1. "Ask not what your country can do for you — ask what you can do for your country." — John F. Kennedy
2. "Freedom is never granted. It is earned by each generation… in the face of tyranny, cruelty, oppression, extremism, sometimes there is only one choice. When the world looks to America, America looks to you, and you never let her down." — Hillary Clinton
3. "Our nation owes a debt to its fallen heroes that we can never fully repay, but we can honor their sacrifice." — President Barack Obama
4. "Freedom makes a huge requirement of every human being. With freedom comes responsibility. For the person who is unwilling to grow up, the person who does not want to carry his own weight, this is a frightening prospect." — Eleanor Roosevelt
5. "There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured with what is right in America." — Bill Clinton
6. "America was not built on fear. America was built on courage, on imagination, and an unbeatable determination to do the job at hand." — Harry S. Truman
7. "Patriotism is not short, frenzied outbursts of emotion, but the tranquil and steady dedication of a lifetime."— Adlai Stevenson
8. "This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave." — Elmer Davis
9. “This country will not be a good place for any of us to live in unless we make it a good place for all of us to live in.” — Theodore Roosevelt
Image: Minnesota National Guard/Flickr