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I don’t reserve appreciation for my freedom to just a day or two each year, but I do like to take the time on this amazing day in our history to not only remember those who fought to earn our freedom but to thank those who have and continue to put their lives on the line to protect that freedom. I remember my Grandpa Gilley who earned a purple heart for his service in WWII. I think about my dad, who earned a Soldier’s Medal for heroism during peace time, and my friend Bryan for his service during Desert Storm. I pray for my friend Mike and his family as they continue to bravely face his deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Thank you to all the soldiers and their families who endure the loneliness of being apart and the heartache of losing a loved one to protect our freedom… my freedom.

Please know that your sacrifice does not go unnoticed… your valor is not in vain. Today I say thank you and a very happy and safe Independence Day to everyone – may you know and appreciate freedom.

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