Memorial Day and the Workday

With Memorial Day just passed, I think of all the military veterans I have worked with over the years, many of who were also combat veterans. I think of the razor thin line that separates those combat veterans from being here to honor and remember their fallen friends on Memorial Day, to being one of the fallen, honored and remembered themselves. When work becomes a painful struggle, I think of what they went through, how it is something I will never know, and that as bad as my day can get, that unlike them, I will most likely walk away whole from it all at the end of the day. I can quit my job if I don’t like it, they could not. Their workplace and conditions were not required to be comfortable and safe. They saw some of their “co-workers” die or became disabled doing their job. Many live in pain each day. I see all of this in them. I could go on, but will end by saying I am a better person for knowing them. When they compliment me as a leader, I feel honored but undeserving. When I am unhappy about work, I think about them, and my day gets better. It never fails…

My reflection in the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington DC - Memorial Day - 2009
My reflection in the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington DC – Memorial Day 2009

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *