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Christmas Message From

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"A Christmas Message

From Secretary of Veterans Affairs Eric K. Shinseki

WASHINGTON (Dec. 22, 2010)-- The second year of our declared

independence found General George Washington's Continental Army encamped

at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. In the week before Christmas of 1777,

more than 12,000 poorly-clothed, hungry and near-frozen American

soldiers were huddled against a brutal winter, enduring the numbing cold

as disease ravaged their ranks. As many as 2,000 of them did not

survive Valley Forge.

General Washington wrote that, "unless some great and capital change

suddenly takes place. . . this Army must inevitably. . . starve,

dissolve, or disperse, in order to obtain subsistence in the best manner

they can."

Despite these bleak conditions, the fighting men of the Continental Army

lifted their own spirits, located much needed supplies and took to

training with determined vigor. They honed their basic fighting skills,

learned new tactics, preserved their dwindling strength and disciplined

themselves for the difficult campaign that would follow. It was an act

of sublime courage and determination. Six months later, the Continental

Army marched out of Valley Forge fit and ready, stronger and more

cohesive as a fighting force, and went on to seize American


Since that winter, American patriots in an unbroken line have found

themselves on duty during the holiday season each year. Our freedom and

security as a nation has required it. So as Americans and their

families gather to celebrate these holidays, let us remember the men and

women, who sacrifice so much for our privileges, comforts and

well-being. They are away from their own families, standing watch for

us on freedom's distant frontiers. We salute their valor, past and

present, and we pray for them and our Veterans, who have so selflessly

given us the gifts we enjoy this holiday season, as we have every season

since 1775.

I offer my warmest best wishes for a blessed and joyous holiday to all

our serving military, our Veterans, all of their families, the survivors

of the fallen, and the members of our Veterans Affairs family, who are

privileged to serve them. May God bless each and every one of you, and

may God continue to bless this wonderful country of ours. Merry

Christmas. "

Source: VA Media Press release Dec 22,2010

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  • Content Curator/HadIt.com Elder

Kinda makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside

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