Have you ever been in gymnasium, perhaps for a basketball game, and the announcer asks all those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces to stand up? 

As they each humbly rise from their seats, you get chills, right? I know I do. 

When Veterans Day rolls around each year, my thoughts always land on those in my family who have signed on a line that they'll die for the country. I think of my grandpa who served in the Korean War, I think of my cousins who have completed multiple tours in Afghanistan and Iraq. 

When I got married last fall, I was introduced to my husband's rich heritage. My husband's grandfather, a New Yorker, served in World War II and wrote daily in a journal about his experiences. The family still pages through the journal to this day. 

I also can't help but think of a friend of mine, who raises her child at home while her husband is deployed. There's sacrifice in more than one way there.

But mostly, on Veterans Day each year, I admire the courage the men and women in our own community display when they sign up to serve our country. I don't think I'll ever be able to eloquently express what their service means to me. So I'll just say this: From the bottom of my heart, thank you. 

Of course, we should be thanking our veterans more than just once a year. That's a given. But the Shakopee Valley News would like to honor the veterans in your life with a special project we're doing for the national holiday. 

You can write a tribute to honor a family member or friend who served in the military. Tributes can be up to 100 words and can include a photo. If no photo is available, we will include an image of their branch of the military or a patriotic symbol (eagle, flag, etc.). Tributes will be published in the Thursday, Nov. 16 edition of the Valley News. The deadline to submit is Veterans Day, Monday, Nov. 11. We will print as many as we have space for. 

Please submit the following: 

  • Name of solider
  • Solider's hometown
  • Soldier's current city
  • Years of service
  • Rank/branch
  • Your relationship to honored soldier
  • Memories of honored solider (up to 100 words)

They can be emailed to rminske@swpub.com or dropped off at our office, 12925 Eagle Creek Parkway, Savage. If you have questions, please give me a call at 952-345-6679. 

Rachel Minske is a regional editor and digital content coordinator for Southwest News Media. 

Digital content coordinator

Rachel Minske is the digital content coordinator at Southwest News Media. She's passionate about in-depth reporting and digital audiences. Rachel is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire and enjoys cooking, running and exploring Minnesota.


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