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Harry Gratz: Thoughts from a veteran

SCV Voices

Posted: July 23, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: July 23, 2012 2:00 a.m.

1. For American veterans: Congress simply must come to grips to increase the maximum amount of insurance coverage, since the maximum was set at $10,000, which leaves the serving spouse and disabled veterans very little in the way of financial resources, as inflation has diminished the value of insurance.

Veterans, write your representatives about it. It should be a national priority.

2. Charity should begin at home. America needs to help our people and not concern itself with other countries.

We have many children that need our support and families are struggling just to survive.

They have to do with what they have, and that is not much, given our economy.

It is too bad that Congress has given itself a pay raise it doesn’t need.

3. The Notch Fairness Act should be passed soon. It will help our people.

I hope that the new president or present president will help our country, as we need help in every way to bring our country back to its normal standard.

4. Concealing memory loss: People with deteriorating dementing disease can be skillful at hiding their declining abilities and forgetfulness.

This is understandable — no one wants to admit they are getting senile.

5. Stop and thank a veteran for the gift of freedom.

People so seldom stop to thank our veterans. You may be surprised at reactions you’ll get as you honor a very special man or woman in a unique and significant way.

6. Our nation isn’t too poor to guarantee the elderly, the sick and the weak a decent health assistance program.

America is wealthy enough and strong enough to help some older citizens live with dignity.

7. We need a place to honor all the participants in our greatest national military victory.

A place to teach their children about their parents and grandparents’ sacrifice for freedom on the battlefield and on the homefront.

A place equal to the scale and significance of the historic defense of our country and the liberties we cherish.

8. Maybe your mother or grandmother rolled up her sleeves and went to work alongside legions of Rosie the Riveters, who turned peacetime factories into the arsenal of democracy that helped us win World War II.

9. We need a veterans monument opposite the new library on Spruce Street in Newhall.

It will attract the people concerning the veterans and the library.

Someone in your family may have fought the Nazis in Europe or the Japanese forces in the Pacific, or collected scrap metal to help build airplanes and anti-craft shells that protected us sailors against attacks.

Maybe your uncle, grandfather or relation lined up outside military recruitment stations to enlist after the day of the attack on Pearl Harbor, or they were drafted after America plunged into war.

They came of age during the Great Depression and Second World War, and went on to build modern America. Men and women whose everyday lives of duty, honor, achievement and courage gave us the world we have today.

Sitting on the porch in the shade, all this came to me through looking at pictures of the war.

I thought the public would be interested in knowing about the above.

Harry Gratz is a Canyon Country resident and World War II veteran


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