by Gen. Janet Wolfenbarger
Commander, Air Force Materiel Command
6/26/2013 - WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio -- To mark the July 4th holiday -- our nation's 237th birthday -- many of us will get together for a cookout or to watch fireworks with friends and family. While we certainly look forward to those activities, we should also use the holiday as an opportunity to reflect on exactly why it is we're able to celebrate.
Certainly we owe a great deal to the men who signed the Declaration of Independence; the nation's founders knew their signatures would be their death sentences if the American Revolution failed. Although they perhaps didn't realize it at the time, the bravery of the Continental Congress proved incredibly significant to future generations.
Since the start of our independence in 1776 through the courageousness of our forefathers, thousands of Americans have given their lives in service to our nation. And millions more have put their lives at risk to preserve our democratic way of life and our individual freedom.
Be proud that -- as members of the Air Force Materiel Command team -- we are a key part of that service, equipping our nation's warfighters with the resources they need.
Enjoy July 4th festivities, and be safe as you celebrate this special time for remembrance and patriotism.