Posts Tagged ‘deployed servicemembers’

Freedom Isn’t Free

July 1st, 2009
As we approach the 4th of July weekend and all of the Independence Day celebrations around the country, I’m struck by how blessed we are to be Americans. The news around the world is such a blatant reminder that we have a gift that we must treasure and preserve at all cost.
When the founding fathers adopted the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, 1776 – they laid the foundation for our gift. In fact, John Adams, a signatory on the declaration – and later our second president, knew it was the kind of day that would be marked and celebrated forever. He wrote to his wife, Abigail, that it “will be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival… It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”
Granted, he was actually talking about the 2nd of July, the day the Second Continental Congress voted to approve a resolution of independence. But he was right, nonetheless. And every year since, we mark the occasion with great celebration.
But freedom isn’t free. For 200+ years, we have continued to fight to defend our freedom, and for the basic human rights of others. I know so many people, Soldiers and Civilians alike, who have sacrificed more than most can imagine for this country, and this year, we lost two of our USACE teammates, who were selflessly serving to provide a better life for the people of Iraq.
So as you enjoy the fireworks and festivities, please take a few minutes this weekend to remember the cost of our independence, and raise a glass to those who continue to make this celebration of independence possible.

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Holiday Message

December 24th, 2008

My wife, Paula, and I want to extend our warmest greetings and best wishes to you and yours.

This past year has been exciting for the Corps, with a historical workload in our Civil Works, Military Programs and research and development missions. Our Corps Family can take pride of the integral role that we’ve played in helping the Army improve the lives of our Soldiers and their Families. We’ve worked diligently with our local, state, and federal partners to reduce risk to Americans through key flood control and coastal projects, and we provided our Nation with critical engineering expertise.

Our Corps employees served selflessly in assisting the good people of Louisiana and Texas recover from Gustav and Ike during a very active hurricane season. I am especially grateful to our Corps’ Civilians and Soldiers who will spend this Holiday season away from their loved ones- many in harms way. Please join us in praying for them and their families and giving thanks for their selfless service and sacrifice. Have a safe and joyful Holiday season and a prosperous New Year.

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