From the days of the Revolutionary War through the two World Wars of the 20th century and the regional conflicts of the 21st, our veterans have stood on the front lines to preserve all of the freedoms that the United States of America enjoys. As a result, every veteran deserves our gratitude. Whether you want to write to a veteran who fought in Korea or to a soldier on the ground in one of today's conflicts, there are organizations ready to help you get your letter where it is most needed.
Veterans of Earlier Wars
Pick a conflict from contemporary American history in which you are interested from World War II to the present day.
Imagine what a veteran of that war would have had to go through during combat. Write a short letter (a paragraph is enough) expressing your gratitude to that veteran for serving the United States.
Insert the letter into an envelope, and send it to one of the many agencies that connect people with veterans. Links to one of them (Operation Gratitude) is in the References section below.
Mail batches of letters in one large envelope to save postage. These organizations will screen your letters and re-send them for you.
Soldiers in Ongoing Conflicts
Write a paragraph thanking the soldier for fighting to protect your country. Include a little information about yourself -- age and hometown are all right, but last names and photos are not.
Focus on distracting the soldier from the horrors of war, just for the few minutes that your letter is open. The purpose of this is to brighten a soldier's day.
Add your email address to the letter if you would like the soldier to reply. If you are a student, make sure to get your parent's permission before including that information.
- ['Paper and an envelope', 'Pen or pencil', 'Stamp']
This isn't the time to engage your veteran in a discussion of controversy -- you're trying to express gratitude, so keep it light and warm.
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