I Am A Veteran
For over two centuries we have kept our nation safe.
Purchasing freedom with our blood. To tyrants, we are
the day of reckoning; to the oppressed, the hope for the
future. Where we were needed, we were there…We are
Whether we were Eagles guarding the Heavens …
grunts being King of our Hill or Seawolves stalking our
prey under the waves … we all were and are Veterans
…. Sworn Defenders of our Constitution. We built our
Fortress of Liberty …. We guarded the Gates of Freedom
… We signed the Blank Check … payable in blood.
We had not yet even begun to fight but we were there
from the beginning, meeting the enemy face to face,
will to will. Hardship and glory we have known. Our
bleeding feet stained the snow at Valley Forge; our
frozen hands pulled Washington across the Delaware.
At Yorktown, while the sunlight glinted from the sword,
we, begrimed… saw our Nation born.
At New Orleans, we fought beyond the hostile hour,
showed the fury of our long rifle… and came of age.
We were with Scott at Vera Cruz… hunted the guerilla
in the mountain passes… and scaled the high plateau.
The fighting was done when we ended our march many
miles from the old Alamo.
From Bull Run to Appomattox, we fought and bled.
Both Blue and Gray were our colors then. Two masters
we served and united them strong… proved that this
nation could right a wrong… and long endure.
We led the charge up San Juan Hill … scaled the walls
of old Tientsin… and stalked the Moro in the steaming
jungle … still always the vanguard.
At Chateau-Thierry, first over the top, then we stood
like a rock on the Marne. We cracked the Hindenburg
Line… We broke the Kaiser’s spine… and didn’t come
back home ’till it was “over, over there.”
A generation older we briefly bowed at Pearl Harbor
and Bataan, but then vowed to return. We fought and
won the greatest naval battles in history, from Midway
to Guadalcanal to Okinawa. Our foe fought to the death
and we set the Rising Sun.
We Assaulted the African shore… learned our lessons
the hard way in the desert sands… we pressed our
buttons into the beach at Anzio… and bounced into
Rome with determination and resolve.
We cleared the skies over Europe with wild Mustangs,
Lightnings and Thunderbolts.
We crossed the English channel… Breached Hitler’s
Atlantic Wall… We broke out at St. Lo… Unbent the
Bulge… Vaulted the Rhine… and swarmed the
Heartland. Hitler’s dream and the Third Reich died. We
won the Greatest War in History.
At birth our Air Force won its first victory… by feeding
freedom from the jaws of an evil dictator and proved
that All Freemen are Berliners
In Korea, we gathered our strength around Pusan…
swept across the frozen Han… outflanked the Reds at
Inchon… marched to the Yalu, and kept a nation free.
At the brink of World War … We caused our enemy to
In Vietnam, while others turned aside, We fought the
long fight, from the Central Highlands to the South
China Sea. We patrolled the jungle, the paddies, the
rivers and owned the skies in the bitter test that belongs
to the betrayed. While WE never lost a battle, we came
home to be spit on.
Around the world, we stand… ever forward. At Berlin’s
gates, we scorned the Wall of Shame. We spanned the
Caribbean in freedom’s cause, answering humanity’s
cry. In Santo Domingo we patrolled the streets to
protect the innocent. In Grenada, we jumped at Salinas
rescued our fellow citizens and proclaimed freedom for
all. Our arms set a Panamanian dictator to flight and
once more raised freedom’s flag. In the Persian Gulf,
we drew the line in the desert and won the Mother of
When cowards attacked women and child on 9-11,
we planted the seeds of freedom in the cradle of
civilization. We will not submit… we will not convert…
the cowards can run… but they will only die tired.
Where brave men fight… there I fought and stood. In
freedom’s cause… I live and I kill. From Concord Bridge
to Heartbreak Ridge, from the Arctic to the Mekong,
from the Caribbean to Kabul…Always ready… then, now,
My bayonet…on the wings of power… keeps freedom
worldwide. And despots, falsely garbed in freedom’s
mantle, falter… hide…. And die.
I Follow… I Teach… I Aid… I Lead… I am a Veteran! FOLLOW ME!
Adapted from “I Am the Infantry” by Doug Lund, USMA ‘85
Many thanks Doug! From your “brothers”!