January 26, 1999 marks the day when my hero, my Dad passed away and January 30, 2013, I lost the dearest person I ever knew when my Mom was called to heaven. The anniversary of my Dad’s passing coincided with a trip to the WW II Museum in New Orleans, where I saw the remnants of a time when my parents, as young adults faced a fearful future. I was inspired by the countless personal stories of individuals who put their country and liberty above themselves. I swelled with pride knowing that my father was a part of the legions who answered the call to arms. As I sat to watch the magnificent production “Beyond All Borders” at the WW II Museum, I was overcome by the sense of appreciation and gratitude for those men and women to which we owe our lives today. It became even more emotional when I strolled into the gift shop and reached for a cap that I thought my Dad would proudly wear. It said WW II Veteran, a moniker that means so much more than just letters stitched on a hat. The tears came as I realized that it had been too many years since my hero had gone to his just reward. I just wanted to say “thank you, Dad” one more time. The consolation came when I thought that he was with his best gal once again, but now they’re up in heaven and he had received his reward for a job well done as a husband, father and an American hero. We can never forget what they did for us. God bless the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard of our great United States of America.