What Does an American Veteran Mean to Me?

By Derek Frankhouser

American Veterans are role models to me. They make me proud of my country. They fill me with reverence. They are a source of inspiration to me. An American veteran sets an honorable example for me to follow.

A veteran creates in me pride for my country. I am proud to be a part of a country that someone would respect enough to willingly endanger their life to protect its values. These brave persons committed themselves to preserving the ideals of our country. Simply knowing of a veteran’s dedication leads me to consider how meaningful the values of our country truly are. As I come to respect these American values as much as they have, I begin to appreciate them more clearly. This appreciation for my country’s values makes me proud to be a part of it.

A veteran spurs me to have reverence. Whether they know it or not, veterans have positively affected me. Without their sacrifice, the world I know may have been drastically changed. Veterans were prepared to die for their cause. Many witnessed terrible things and endured incredibly strenuous situations. All veterans and especially the honorable persons that do not remain with us today have paid in full the high price for freedom and the life we all know in America. Considering the enormity of what veterans have accomplished brings me to greatly appreciate and admire them.

A veteran inspires me. In their days of duty, they were motivated to fight for things they held in the utmost importance. Today, I am in wonder of the dedication veterans held for their cause. This feeling of wonder drives me to apply their attitude toward their obligations to my way of life. This attitude is to work hard and to not be hindered by doing what I believe is right and true.

I consider veterans to be of the highest quality of role models. Veterans encourage me to love my country. They fill me with great respect for them. And finally, veterans inspire me to live a life dedicated to the things I believe to be right.


The Amvets  organization in Pennsylvania encouraged school students to write essays about American military veterans. The essay that follows won the first prize of $100 at Amvets Post 19 in Lancaster, PA. It was written by Derek Frankhouser, who at the time was a high school sophmore at Lancaster Christian School in that community. Derek is the grandson of Bill Frankhouser of our 603rd Squadron.