Thank you to all veterans, families

Brice Glasscock is currently a medic in the 928th ASMC and was deployed to Afghanistan in January 2011. His squad is currently working at B.A.F (Baghram Air Force Base) as flight and emergency room medics in the busiest facility in Afghanistan, providing medical support in the middle of the conflict.
Brice Glasscock is currently a medic in the 928th ASMC and was deployed to Afghanistan in January 2011. His squad is currently working at B.A.F (Baghram Air Force Base) as flight and emergency room medics in the busiest facility in Afghanistan, providing medical support in the middle of the conflict.

RBC I In our small community we are very fortunate to enjoy all the freedoms our veterans have fought and continue to fight for. It is imperative in this time to appreciate the service men and women that sacrifice so much for us. In our county combined with Routt and Moffat, there are 3,597 veterans to celebrate. Along with those veterans, there are approximately 152,000 American troops serving in the Middle East to help fight the War on Terror. Currently there are approximately 1,580,255 active duty personnel. Of those nearly 369,000 are serving outside the United States in more then 150 countries. Over the years, there have been 2,489,335 soldiers killed or wounded in the line of duty over 66 conflicts beginning with the Revolutionary war.
Along with these troops are their families and loved ones left behind to continue their lives. Clearly, one day a year is not nearly enough to honor all of those men and women and their families for all they do for their country. There are so many veterans and active duty personnel just in our communities who deserve praise and recognition. Each of these people have a story to tell and a family that knows the sacrifice firsthand.
One such hero is Brice Glasscock of Meeker. He has been in the military for more than 20 years, first as an active duty member of the Army and since 1994 as a member of the Colorado National Guard. He is currently a medic in the 928th ASMC and was deployed to Afghanistan in January 2011. The 928th is scheduled to come home in late January 2012. His squad is currently working at B.A.F (Baghram Air Force Base) as flight and emergency room medics in the busiest facility in Afghanistan, providing medical support in the middle of conflict. Their flight runs are often into extremely dangerous locations and they put their lives in danger with every life they save. The living conditions are far less then what they are used to and demand a mental toughness beyond comprehension.
Dondi Glasscock, Brice’s wife, said, “I don’t know how families with kids at home make it a full year.” The one year deployment is common for the National Guard and certainly extremely long considering they all had civilian jobs prior to their deployment. They are asked to leave their job, leave their families, and reside in a harsh environment.
Glasscock has talked about the number of injuries he sees from day to day, caring for young men often no older than his son who currently attends college in California. Glasscock’s squad works 24 hours on and 24 hours off, caring for injured soldiers and Afghani civilians near their base who require basic care. The stress is multiplied by constant noise: aircraft flying constantly, the sounds of battle and the sound of injured men requiring care. His squad sleeps in barracks no bigger then an average bedroom with seven other squad members, and can only communicate with their families back home via poor Internet service and minimal phone calls.
The medics are very well trained and equipped to handle war type injuries. However, the endless string of young soldiers being injured makes the strain intense for even the best trained professionals. It is without a doubt that their appreciation for life in the United States is heightened. Each branch of the armed forces have different lengths and numbers of deployments, but with every deployment there is a family dealing with the difficulties. It is the pride and dedication to the “mission” that keeps servicemen and servicewomen serving their country for so many years.
Veterans seem to share a modesty in which they do not demand recognition except for a fellow veteran. They simply march in every parade, present colors at different events and dedicate tokens of honor and appreciation on Memorial Day. The fact is, they are proud to have served our great country and we are proud to have had them serve. We have a tendency to get lackadaisical with our gratitude and lose perspective throughout the year when we should take every opportunity to shake their hand and tell them thank you and welcome home. It is their sacrifice as well as the sacrifice of their families that make America what it is today.
Please join in the Veterans Day celebrations in Rangely and Meeker. The Meeker VFW members and the Meeker Chamber of Commerce will begin their ceremonies at noon on the courthouse lawn with a lunch for veterans and their families afterward. In Rangely, Alliance Energy invites all veterans to a barbecue at the Elks Lodge at noon on Friday. Barone Middle School will hold their annual ceremony to celebrate veterans at 2:30 p.m., and Tom Kilduff of Meeker will once again be in the preschool to share his story and history on Veterans Day with the kids, as well as giving them awards for knowing the Pledge Of Allegiance. Thank you to all veterans and their families, not just on this day but forever.