Interesting, true story I want to share.
A GWOT (Global War on Terrorism)veteran is driving and sees a black bag lying on the side of the road. He panics and starts swerving out of control. A nearby police officer catches the car spiraling and turns his lights on in pursuit. When the car finally pulls over to the side of the road, the officer pulls the license plate number. After making sure there weren’t any obvious signs of danger, he steps out of his vehicle and walks towards the car. As he gets closer to the window he can see a young man sitting in the driver’s seat with a look on his face like something isn’t right. He proceeds to ask for the young man’s driver’s license and registration. Normal procedure. However, something different occurred during this stop. Something that made me say, “Somewhere in the legislature someone did something right.” He notices the word “veteran” on this young man’s driver’s license. What the young man didn’t know was that the police officer was himself, a veteran of the Vietnam War. So what happened next brought tears to my eyes and joy to my heart. The police officer asked the young man “Are you okay?” The young man explained to the officer how seeing the black bag frightened him. The officer calmed the young man down, gave him some advice from one veteran to another, and sent him on his way. He followed the young man a little ways down the road to ensure he was okay.
There is something remarkable about this story. A law was passed and now our law enforcement officers, and other who require identification, can know they are dealing with a veteran. A veteran is prone to many things (not including violence) and flashbacks are one of them. The ability of the police officer to identify that on the front end was undoubtedly a plus in this situation. His response changed, and the young man’s reaction changed, and a situation that could have gone wrong for the veteran went right.
If you’re a veteran, I encourage you to go get the identification on your license; you never know when someone needs to know “from whence you came.” We have a unique opportunity to identify ourselves. For those that didn’t do twenty and retire or those that aren’t still actively in, if you want to wear it proudly now you can. Take your DD-214 into your local Revenue office and your license will have the word “veteran” displayed on it. Please keep in mind there is a fee associated with this designation. Below is a link to an article about this new law.
Secondly, I want to applaud the officer, who didn’t react first but thought first, and how far his kindness went. I salute you.