As Veterans Day nears, the sacrifice of those who served our nation is at the forefront of our minds. There are so many veterans in our community in a multitude of roles, with over 129,000 veterans currently in Western New York and more slated to return in the upcoming year. They are our fathers, mothers, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters, friends, colleagues and more. They served for us and our freedom, and now it’s our turn to serve them.

I ask that you remember veterans throughout the year, on all days. Think about struggles they faced while serving, the conditions they had to brave. Think about the families that went long periods of times without seeing their loved ones. Think about those who paid the ultimate sacrifice and never came home.

The Veterans One-stop Center of WNY sees the significant need there is in our community to empower and honor the men and women who served for us. We have helped over 10,000 veterans and their families and that number steadily increases every day. We see first-hand the imperative need there is to help service men and women.

There are so many opportunities and ways you can honor the veteran community throughout the year. Remember and honor veterans by giving your time, a helping hand, kind words, donations and more. Veterans Day is a day to remind us all of the massive debt of gratitude we owe to all service men and women. It is also a reminder that every single day we should continue to think of and be thankful for those who served for us.

CHUCK MARRA, president and CEO, Veterans One-stop Center of WNY, Buffalo

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