United States Department of Defense United States Department of Defense

Secretary of Defense Message

Press Operations Bookmark and Share

Message


Veterans Day Message

Message by Secretary of Defense Robert M. Gates, Washington, DC, Wednesday, November 11, 2009
 

On this our ninth Veteran’s Day since the attacks on September 11th, let us take a moment to remember those, past and present, who have served our nation in uniform.

Today we remain a nation at war with hundreds of thousands of men and women deployed far from home.  Those serving on the front lines face hardship, danger, and a ruthless and resourceful enemy.  Their families keeping vigilant watch for their loved one’s return serve and sacrifice as well.

This Veteran’s Day is especially poignant given the atrocity that took place at Fort Hood, where those who stepped forward to serve were cut down as they were preparing to deploy.  The thoughts and prayers of the entire country are with the wounded and the families of the fallen.  Our hope is that time will eventually assuage the anguish that this terrible act has caused.

Our nation cannot fully repay the debt owed our veterans and their families, but we can use this opportunity to reflect and remember what these brave Americans have done.  David Lloyd George, speaking during the opening months of World War I, the conflict that began this day of remembrance, said: “The stern hand of fate has scourged us to an elevation where we can see the everlasting things that matter for a nation – the great peaks we had forgotten, of Honor, Duty, Patriotism, and clad in glittering white, the towering pinnacle of sacrifice pointing like a rugged finger to Heaven.”

To America’s veterans: on behalf of a grateful nation, thank you for your towering pinnacle of sacrifice on behalf of your countrymen.

Most Recent Messages

11/27/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, DC

11/11/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, D.C.

10/17/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, D.C.

09/30/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Seoul, South Korea

09/03/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, D.C.

07/03/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, D.C.

05/27/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, Washington, D.C.

05/17/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, The Pentagon

05/14/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, The Pentagon

04/02/2013

As Written by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel, The Pentagon