Adjutant General’s 2015 Veterans Day message

Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams

Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams

SANDSTON, Va. — Every year on November 11 we observe Veterans Day and honor the dedicated service of all members of the Armed Forces, both currently serving and retired or separated. It is important that we recognize how men and women in uniform have carried the torch of freedom all across the globe during times of conflict as well as during times of peace.

There are many examples of selfless service demonstrated by the men and women who answered the call during our nation’s wars from World War I through the Global War on Terror. This past weekend I had the great fortune to visit in Roanoke with veterans who served in D-Day, Korea and Vietnam and listen to their stories. Their service provides such tremendous inspiration to those of us who continue to serve today. We owe them all a special debt of gratitude for the shining example they set.

The National Guard has made the transition from being a strategic reserve to an operational reserve, and the challenges we face are great. The threats against our freedom and way of life are constantly changing, but we have the most experienced and effective fighting force our country has ever seen. We must all work together to make sure to maintain these unprecedented levels of readiness in a constrained resource environment by making tough, smart decisions on how we train. We must maintain our forces and continue to build partnerships to maximize our resources in order to be there when our fellow citizens needs us. I am confident that with the quality of Soldiers and Airmen and the outstanding officer and noncommissioned officer leadership in our formations that we can meet those challenges.

Since 9/11, more than 15,000 Virginia Guard Soldiers and Airmen have mobilized in support of homeland defense, combat operations and peacekeeping missions in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Kosovo and other locations around the world. Many of our personnel have deployed two or three or more times, and we couldn’t have been so successful without the support of our families. November is Military Family Month, and we must remember to thank our family members each and every day for what they do, because we couldn’t accomplish our mission without them.

Our service across the globe has also come at a price. Many Soldiers and Airmen return home with injuries that we can see as well as those we can’t. November is Warrior Care Month, and we owe it to all of them to make sure they receive the best care possible. For more information about Warrior Care Month and how you can help, please visit http://www.wtc.army.mil/wtc/warrior_care_month_2015.html.

I ask everyone to salute our veterans and thank them for what they do now and the service they have given our country in the past. Please remember that many of our men and women are away from home right now, and we should keep them in our thoughts and prayers.

I am so proud of every Soldier and Airmen in the Virginia National Guard, and I don’t have the words to truly express the appreciation I feel for your service to commonwealth and country. It is an honor and privilege to serve with you.

 

 

Maj. Gen. Timothy P. Williams
The 28th Adjutant General of Virginia