A Letter to My Soldier
From R.Riveter's CEO
When you raised your right hand and joined the Army you weren't looking for recognition. Not even a “Thank You”. You never imagined that your choices would lead to so much beyond the initial intentions of service – pure, simple service to our great nation.
Today, when someone thanks you for your service, I can see the look on your face. Although you know that you play a part in keeping our country safe, you don’t always realize what your service means to those of us who you risk everything for.
Without fail, you always find yourself at a loss for words. “It was the natural thing to do in 2001,” you mumble. Or “you'd do it for me, right?”
But the truth is, some can't do it. Some simply won't. And that's OK because you, and others like you, did. You see, it’s not just the idea of sacrificing for others that draws my appreciation. For me—for our family—it is more.
The series of events that led us to meet could not have happened any other way. I was 19, you were a Cadet. Although we didn't know it at the time, 12 years later I see now that we grew up together. Our love and commitment was tested early and often by the Army, but we only grew stronger. Unlike many, we now know our strength, and fear nothing even though we can foresee the future no better now than at 19. Not all wives have that.
Today, our son, not even 4 years old, knows to say “Go Army, Beat Navy!” when all else fails. He's your spitting image, and has an intense desire to follow your footsteps. At 3, I know that all sons love their fathers, but the look in his eyes for someone so young, is so fierce. You are his hero – and that won’t be something that fades with his youthful innocence. Not all sons have that.
Our daughter is not yet one, but she’ll know her Daddy was a Ranger. This, I assure you, will be priceless. Lord help that first boy that walks through our door. Our daughter's father will have the courage, perspective, and strength to be there for her no matter what. Not all daughters have that.
My career, and what I hope will be my professional legacy that outlasts me, was born of your service. We are unified in purpose and spirit to bring something more to the military spouses who support and endure a life that asks more of them than any other. We are always growing, and always creating, but we are proud of the company we've built. Not all moms have that.
Today (or any other day, for that matter), when I, or anyone else, thank you for your service - don't sheepishly brush it off and divert attention. Think about that old white townhouse we called home in Fort Benning, GA. Think about the first time you saw me after you returned from Afghanistan. Think about the family we’ve created that you fight to grow and protect. Think about all we learned and the strength of heart we've gained. Know that what you did was bigger than you, and just say "you're welcome." Genuinely.
Because I'll forever be grateful, and I hope you are too.
All my love,
CEO + Co-Founder