Veterans Day is on my mind and I have been doing a lot of somber reflection to my time of active duty service. It was a time that I not only lived and worked with a diverse group of people, but it was the unspoken awareness that no matter how varied our differences -- we literally trusted one another with our lives.
I can't help but think about what that means.
We were all well aware, that on any given day, especially serving at sea, we could have been called into a hostile situation. Some days, we were. On those days, I had no doubt my shipmates would have died to protect me, as they knew I would have died to protect any one of them. I'm not talking death in the figurative or poetic sense -- from the moment a ship left port, death, real death, no longer taking a breath, a notice sent to family back home death, was a real possibility. That is a level of trust and devotion that I have not experienced since.
There are no relationships that can ever compare. We were closer than friends, hell we were closer than family -- we shared a bond which defies definition.