Yesterday in the grocery I was stopped by an elderly man who was looking for paper towels. "My eyes aren't as good as they used to be," he apologized. I walked with him to the proper aisle and helped him find what he wanted. One of the comments I made got him to talking, and we passed a few minutes chatting about his ailing health, but speedy recovery from a stroke last year. Our conversation meandered about through several topics, and then landed upon the fact that he was a veteran, fighting in World War Two for Canada.
I studied the second world war extensively in high school, reading many books and even having the opportunity to interview a holocaust survivor. It is a subject near to me, and I am always in reverence of the men and women who were faced with such tribulation in their lives, and their willingness to march into battle to defend our freedom.
My gratefulness surfaced quickly, and when he said to me "You know, I'm a veteran" my response came immediately: "Thank you." There was a look of appreciation that shone from his eyes. I don't often get the chance to thank someone for this great selfless work, and I was thankful to share a quick 'thank you' with this gentleman.