May is Military Appreciation Month

  • Published
  • By Richard Gray
  • TriWest Healthcare Alliance
You know this.

It's not a 9-to-5 job. It's not a TV sitcom. It's a lifestyle. Sacrifice, danger and separations they're part of it.

Military life comes with honor and pride in defending and serving our nation, and it's the only calling that, in many ways, the family also serves.

Many civilians know this too, and they're finding their own ways to say "thanks for your service and all that you do."

That's why in May for National Military Appreciation Month, the country says "thanks to you and yours for upholding and paying for our liberties. You have backup among the civilian ranks."

Events and activities are planned in communities around the nation, at baseball games, auto races, concerts, parades and more to celebrate those who wear the uniform. Some of these events are listed at the National Military Appreciation Month Web site at

TriWest Healthcare Alliance, showing its appreciation, launched Military May Days, a program with each day throughout May, to give back to those it serves in western states.

Also know, that May isn't the only time to give back.

At one of Operation Homefront's chapter offices, the director is helping military families meet their everyday needs. She says she's standing in for her son, who was killed in Iraq on Mother's Day.

Young adults work as camp counselors at the National Military Family Association's Operation Purple Camps around the nation so that children of military families can meet others like themselves. During camp, they learn how to cope with deployments and a host of other issues that never occur to civilian children.

A Vietnam veteran whose legs could not be saved after a grenade blast wears shorts showing his stars-and-stripes-decorated artificial legs when he visits new amputees. He says they are a signboard that says things will work out.

On holidays, neighbors and co-workers pool their resources and energies to collect reminders of home that are missed on overseas duty and send gift packages to defenders they don't even know.

The things people do to support the military seem endless. They're finding their own ways to say thanks for your service and all that you do.