What Does Independence Day Mean to You?

I asked this question on Twitter and Facebook. Here are some your answers: For me, the 4th of July is summed up in a line from "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." "As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free." I don't have to ask myself if I would die for the cause of freedom, because so many others have already made the ultimate sacrifice.

What does Independence Day mean to you? I asked this question on Twitter and Facebook.  Here are some your answers:

Lisa Abraham of Harlan writes: For me, the 4th of July is summed up in a line from "The Battle Hymn of the Republic." "As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free." I don't have to ask myself if I would die for the cause of freedom, because so many others have already made the ultimate sacrifice.

Morgan Schutters of Berea writes: It is the celebration of the freedom that is uniquely ours in the United States. Many people will never know freedom like we do.

Jeanne Luttrell Lee of Harlan writes:  If America had only a glimpse of the toll that war takes on our soldiers we would all be eternally grateful to each and every one of them.  They sign up willing to give their lives for our freedom.  Many who serve get to come home but many do not.  One pays the ultimate sacrifice and the others pay the rest of his or her life in one way or another.  We shouldn't just thank them once or twice a year.  They deserve our thanks in whatever way we can show it every day. 

When John came home from Panama he was in his 20's and returned with grey hair.  At that time he was an 82nd Airborne paratrooper.  They jumped in to enemy territory under fire and he injured his leg in the jump.  We didn't hear from him for weeks.  On Christmas Day he was on patrol and a Panamanian family invited him in for dinner.  They asked if he would like to use their phone to call his family and let us know he was alive.  What a great Christmas present!

A veteran, Duane Nettlesbey of Los Angeles, California writes:  Once you have made the decision that will sacrifice life and limb to protect this great nation and all that it stands for, freedom and equality, it never leaves your spirit.  Once an American Soldier … always an American Soldier.  Life, liberty, and the pursuit of all who threaten it.  TRUTH, justice, and the American Way.

Rene King Thompson of Covington writes:  Many of my ancestors came to these shores to escape religious persecution, to escape being told by the powers that be who to worship and how to worship under penalty of death.  Independence Day is, for us, as much a religious holiday as it is a political one, because we are allowed the freedom through the Constitution to worship as we choose without the fear of governmentally sponsored pogroms, forced conversions and expulsions.  We can worship, or not worship, as we personally see fit, thanks to our forefathers.

Ann Robinson of Harlan writes:  To me Independence Day means "The birth of our nation and the flight of the American soldier!"

Duane Bonifer of Ebenezer writes:  "Yankee Doodle Dandy" says it all to me.  At the end of the film, Cohan (played by James Cagney) says to FDR:  “And I wouldn't worry about this war -- we've got it licked.  Where else could a guy like me come in and talk to the head man?” 

And FDR responds:  “Well, Mr. Cohan, I think that pretty well sums up what this country is all about.”   Well said, indeed.

Rodney Jones of Harlan writes:  When the men signed the document, they pledged their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor.  By signing, they signed their death warrants if the war went ill, which it nearly did.  To me it means that freedom isn't free.  It is bought by precious blood, risk, and sacrifice.

Thank you for sharing your comments.  For me, I am proud to be an American and thankful for our "Founding Fathers".   Remember freedom is never free. It must be taken by force and paid for with the blood of patriots.  Please take time today and everyday, to tell a veteran "thank you".  They put their lives on the line so that we would not have to.  To veterans everywhere, "THANK YOU". 

Happy Independence Day! 

As always, thanks for making WYMT-TV your source for news and information.  We appreciate your trust.

God Bless America!  ... and America … Bless God!
 
Neil Middleton
WYMT Mountain News
Appreciate Freedom – Thank a Vet!
 

But a Constitution of Government once changed from Freedom, can never be restored. Liberty, once lost, is lost forever.
John Adams
2nd President

Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream.  It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children's children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.
Ronald Reagan
40th President

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