According to the website Statista, following the most recent wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, the number of veterans in the United States in 2019 was over 17.42 million. These brave men and women are rightfully lauded for the sacrifices they made for their country, as well as the risks they took. Veterans come from all corners of the country, and served in all military branches. Missing from that number are the 20+ million veterans who wore that uniform as far back as 1940 in WWII. Some died from combat inflicted wounds, some from freak training or transport accidents and some died of natural causes. Not all were citizens of this great nation, but all served. All earned the distinction of being called a U.S. veteran for their service, whether a lifer or short timer. From this old Marine to you soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines, thank you and Semper Fi! Be ever vigilant!!!