Friday, Nov. 11 is a day for the United States of America to remember those involved in the armed forces-Veteran’s Day. At Northwestern, several students, staff and faculty have family members who have served for the country.
With a father who has served in the Army through Basic Training and a cousin who is finishing up Air Force Basic Training, freshman Lily Peschau has immense respect for the members of her family who have chosen to serve.
“My dad’s role in the military has given me a great appreciation for the families that have family members that serve as well,” Peschau said. “When I hear both of them talk about their experiences and even see them tear up, I immediately am filled with pride and joy to call them mine.”
Though Peschau is immensely proud of her family members, she acknowledges that it comes with a fair amount of struggles. Peschau’s her dad was gone often during her childhood because of his role in the service, and she is now having a similar experience with her cousin. Since contact is never constant, patience is key.
“You never know when you will be receiving a phone call. It could be months away. It is really hard to never see them when you want to,” Peschau said. “I didn’t realize how much my cousin and dad meant to me until I couldn’t talk to them whenever I wanted to.”
Having a family member in the armed forces is not without strife, but Peschau knows what they’re doing is for a cause bigger than themselves. She has come to realize that, throughout life, it isn’t about titles or rankings.
“The hard work that is done behind it all truly shows the inside of someone’s heart,” Peschau said.
Though sophomore Jaycee Vander Berg doesn’t have any close family members serving, she still sees the importance in recognizing those who do.
“It’s important to have a day to honor the people who have done so much to serve beyond themselves, but it’s not only the day,” Vander Berg said. “I think it’s more of a time to bring up the people who have served, since it can easily slip our minds, and a way to pay respect to them.”
Vander Berg sees the way others sacrifice for the country as a call for the rest of us to not take what we have for granted.
“People have given their lives for us, so don’t sit around doing nothing. Live your free life to the fullest,” Vander Berg said.
For all Americans, Veteran’s Day is a time for us to honor and remember those who have selflessly served the United States. Even if you do not have a family member in the armed services, the sacrifices made by those involved are ones to be remembered every day.