TAL Press Release on Ft Hood Shootings

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t1larg_fort_hood_callers_gi Picture from CNN, for updates, go to this link. Press Release as follows:
National Commander expresses condolences over Ft. Hood Shootings WASHINGTON (Nov. 5, 2009) -- American Legion National Commander Clarence E. Hill released the following statement concerning this afternoon’s shootings at Ft. Hood: “My first reaction is purely emotional. I must say that I am shocked and speechless. The American Legion extends condolences to the victims and the families of those affected by the shootings at Fort Hood. The facts are not all out and there is still much about the events that we do not yet know. We do know, however, that The American Legion will reach out to assist any soldiers, family members or other victims of this horrible tragedy in any way possible. We will release further statements as the facts become known.” John Brieden, a Texan and past national commander of The American Legion, said, “The first thought I have about this tragedy is that I’m angry. You’ve got folks who are preparing to deploy into a dangerous area of the world, and you’ve got them here at home being attacked. And it makes me angry that they would lose their lives in this way, right here in America.” Brieden said The American Legion has several programs such as its Family Support Network that are designed to reach out to families who suffer tragic losses. “All of a sudden, we have families with a father, mother, a spouse who isn’t going to be coming home. So how do you deal with this? “Yes, they need help,” Brieden said. “And The American Legion will certainly be helping those families who lost loved ones in such a horrible incident. We intend to help as much as we possibly can.” Killeen American Legion Post 223, and Coppers Cover Post 582 in Texas are standing by to lend whatever assistance might be needed in the area.
There is time later to figure out what happened, for now, our hearts and prayers go out to the Ft Hood community.
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The nation, not just veterans and service members, mourn the lost of those guardians of democracy at Ft Hood. I hope and pray that their families know we share their grief, pain and sorrow. Although we may not know their names or have seen their faces, they are forever our comrades.

To those recovering from their wounds, our thoughts and prayers are with you and your families. We wish you a speedy recovery.

Next week, we pause to observe Veterans Day. I am frequently asked, "What is a veteran?" The standard response comes quickly to the lips. I am rarely asked, "What does it mean to be a veterans?" At times like these, this question is much more challenging as each answer is unique to each veteran's life experiences. No matter which branch of service, earning the right to be called a "veteran" is a personal honor and privilege.

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News from the World of Military and Veterans Issues. Iraq and A-Stan in parenthesis reflects that the author is currently deployed to that theater.