A Salute to Veterans: Still Proud to Serve

  • The Council on Aging is a private, 501(c)(3) organization.
  • It was founded to provide services tailored to the specific needs of seniors.
  • They believe that everyone should have the opportunity to live life to the fullest – no matter their age.

Recently, I have the honor of being invited to speak and perform at a Center for a group of veterans. The Center was specially designed for seniors of all capabilities and walks of life.  The Center also provided services for families and caregivers  of Seniors in a secure, comfortable atmosphere.

The Council on Aging which supervises the Center is a private, 501(c)(3) organization.  It was founded to provide services tailored to the specific needs of seniors.  They believe that everyone should have the opportunity to live life to the fullest – no matter their age. The mission of The Council On Aging is to be the primary provider of comprehensive life-saving and life-improving services and programs for seniors.

Grateful for the invitation, I went to do my presentation and performance for the “Vets” group at the Center. From the very beginning, I noticed a different Je ne sais quoi. (By the way, I have been dying to work that phrase into one of my articles for years.  Mission accomplished.)

My audience of Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen was engaging, alert and involved.  They sang songs with me, laughed at my failed attempts at jokes, and reminisced about the years gone by. I saw the years melt away in their eyes.  The servicemen who had sacrificed were at the ready, at least in spirit, to do it all again.

Our time together began with each and every one of them introducing themselves, telling where they were from, and proudly proclaiming where they served and when.  I saw the pride in their faces. One of the things I found most exciting was the questions my vet group asked me. Their questions ranged from my personal experiences in tours of combat, in Special Operations and in the military in general to specific questions about the military’s present and future force structure.

I shared with them my experiences from back then until now and highlighted how technology had indeed changed the Military Force Structure.  But, I added that there would always be a need for men and women who didn’t mind “Grunt Work.”

At the end of our time together, they saluted me and thanked me for coming. In turn I said, “No my fellow brothers in arms.  It’s I who salute you.  Thanks so very much for having me and sharing yourselves.  Rangers Lead the Way!”

Oh I almost forgot. Je ne sais quoi is a French term that literally means “ I don’t know what.” Appropriate don’t you think?

By the way, doesn’t my Dad look dashing in his WWII Army Uniform? You go “Pops”!  Thank you for your Service!

Dana Matthews

Dr Dana Matthews is a Lieutenant Colonel, US Army Ranger (Retired). He holds a BA in Journalism, an MBA/JD Law Degree, and a Doctorate in Organizational Psychology.

He is a Member of the National Press Club in Washington DC and has appeared on TV and Radio.

He was awarded the Military Order of the Purple Heart for Combat Wounded Veterans.

Dr Dana Matthews is a well published Journalist and writer with articles appearing in the Scripps Newspaper/ TCPALM.COM

He also co authored and published a novel entitled " El Segundo- One Man's Journey for Redemption". 


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