By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
Alabama has the highest veteran population on a percentage basis of any state. Governor Bentley and other Alabama leaders took a moment on this Veterans Day, a holiday that began in Alabama, to salute the service of those veterans.
Alabama Governor Robert Bentley (R) said on Facebook, “On Veterans Day, we honor those men and women who at one time or another have chosen to leave behind friends and family to preserve our freedom. We’re inspired by our their dedication, encouraged by their bravery and thankful for how they serve our country with dignity and honor. We’re also thankful for the family and friends of our service members who support their loved ones and share in the sacrifice. We should give thanks every day for the freedoms we enjoy because of the service of our veterans.”
Speaker of the Alabama House Mike Hubbard (R) from Auburn said on Facebook, “Each and every day we should honor and thank the brave men and women who defend our freedoms from tyranny. Today, we stand together as a nation and pay respect to all those who have served. Thank you.”
Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell (D) from Selma issued a written statement in recognition of Veterans Day. Rep. Sewell wrote, “On Veterans Day, we pause to pay tribute to every service member who has answered the call to protect our democracy. Across every generation, their courage has never wavered. For that, we owe our nation’s veterans and their families a debt of gratitude.”
Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange (R) said on Twitter, “Thank you to all our veterans, we are forever grateful for your service to our great nation and state.”
Republican nominee for Alabama’s First Congressional District Bradley Byrne from Montrose said on Facebook, “We pay tribute to the many men and women who have served our country and to the servicemen and women still defending our freedoms today, Happy Veterans Day.”
Alabama State Representative Dickie Drake (R) from Leeds said on Facebook, “Proud of our military family and proud to serve. Thank you God for my two awesome sons. Happy Veterans Day to all vets and to their families who kept the home fire burning while they served.” Rep. Drake is a veteran and the father of two active duty military pilots.
Alabama State Senator Harri Anne Smith (I) said on Facebook, “HAPPY VETERANS DAY! THANK YOU TO ALL THOSE WHO HAVE SERVED AND FOUGHT TO PROTECT OUR FREEDOMS WHICH WE HOLD SO DEAR.”
Alabama Public Service Commission candidate Jonathan Barbee (R) said, “I want to thank all Veterans for their sacrifice. Past, present, and future, we honor your commitment to defending our freedoms and the American way of life. You will always be remembered in our hearts.”
Seventh District Congressional Candidate Matt Jenkins (R) said on Facebook, “Today is the day that we as Americans dedicate to the observance of the sacrifices that Veterans have made for our nation. This is the day we pause to thank those who have served in the United States Military to protect freedom and democracy not only around the world but here at home as well. As Veterans, Danielle and I realize the tremendous sacrifices that have been by Veterans and their families. As you sit today, remember that a US Military Veteran has stood the watch since the Revolutionary War to ensure the freedoms we as Americans hold dear. May God Continue to Bless our Nation, our Veterans and the Great State of Alabama.”
Rep. Sewell continued, “We acknowledge that no ceremony or parade can fully repay the debt we owe. Our gratitude must be displayed in the support we provide to our veterans and service members when they return home. It is unacceptable that nearly 1 million veterans suffer when SNAP benefits are slashed and that 67,000 will go to bed tonight without a home. No one who fights for our country should return to our shores and have to fight for a job, a meal, a home or quality healthcare. Providing support to our veterans and their families with the care they need and the benefits they deserve is one of our most fundamental moral obligations as a society. This obligation endures long after the war has ended and we should remain dedicated to that cause. The immeasurable contributions and resolve of our nation’s veterans represent the very best of what the American people have to offer. Today, we must express the gratitude of a grateful nation as we remember our wounded, our missing and our fallen.”
Congressman Spencer Bachus (R) from Vestavia said on Twitter, “Thank you to our veterans for protecting our freedoms. America recognizes your service and sacrifices today.”
Auburn University President Jay Gogue said, “Our heartfelt appreciation goes out to all the men and women who have or currently serve our nation in the U.S. military. We are truly grateful.”
State Representative Merika Coleman-Evans (D) said on Facebook, “Thank you so much to all of the Veterans who served this country bravely and proudly. The freedoms that we enjoy in this country are because of your commitment to protect and serve. I especially thank my husband, my dad and all of my cousins, aunts and uncles who served in the armed forces!
Shelby County Republican Party Chairman Freddie Ard said on Facebook, “Every American lives in freedom because of those who have served in the United States military. Our veterans cannot be thanked enough, so we just have to say it often. Especially today, a heartfelt “thank you” for your service to our great country.”
Alabama Democratic Majority Chairman Mark Kennedy said on Facebook, “Peggy and I would like to wish a special Happy Veterans Day to our son Leigh Kennedy. He is currently serving over seas in Kuwait. We are so proud of Leigh and all those who serve our Country.”
Alabama State Senator Clay Scofield (R) said on Facebook, “Every American has been given a very special gift. This gift wasn’t bought in a store or on the Internet. It was bought at places like Yorktown and Trenton during the Revolution. It was fiercely defended on distant battlefields like Belleau Wood, Normandy, Iwo Jima, Bastogne, Inchon, Khe Sanh, Kuwait, Tora Bora, and Fallujah. This special gift is called Freedom. It has been bought with blood, sweat, and tears in a struggle unmatched by any other civilization in the history of mankind.”
U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions said, “On Veterans Day, our nation pauses to honor the millions of Americans who have served their country and defended its people. Each generation, these brave souls have risen to answer the call. Alabama has a long, distinguished tradition of military service and is home to many of our nation’s greatest heroes. Last night, in Birmingham, I was humbled to present an award to the Tuskegee Airmen, whose tremendous courage in the face of adversity is a lasting inspiration to all of us. Today, in Huntsville, I was privileged to participate in a breakfast and parade to honor the contribution of all who served. God bless our veterans, their families, and our country.”
Congressman Mike Rogers (R) from Saks said, “The brave men and women in uniform who currently serve and have served sacrifice daily on our behalf. I hope we will continue to honor them and remember the ones who have paid the ultimate sacrifice not only on Veteran’s Day, but every day. Without their selfless willingness to serve, we would not have the same freedoms we enjoy today.”