Photo of US Army soldier and a Humvee in an article celebrating the 244th birthday of the Army by Allen West

This We Will Defend: Our Dreamers

In Education, Front Page, Military by Allen West

You know there are bad days, and OK days. There are good days, lovely days (Bill Withers sang a song about those), and great days. However, today is a freaking awesome day and lemme explain why.

First of all, today is June 14th, and it is the 244th birthday of our United States Army. How appropriate for this to come a week after the 75th anniversary of D-Day. I know it is corny for some today, but I still love the song “We Were There,” and wish they would update it as a theme for the US Army.


I think about my dad who was a Corporal in World War II and my nephew currently serving as a Major. That is what makes America exceptional, great, freaking awesome!

Sadly, there are those who live life unfulfilled and will never experience such a sense of pride that comes from being part of a special Brotherhood, that includes men and women.

See, on this day, an Army was formed, before there was even an America. And our Army has a simple motto, “This We’ll Defend.” So, what was it that our Army was formed to defend before there was even a nation? Easy, our fundamental principles of liberty, freedom, and individual rights and self-determination . . . our pursuit of happiness. Our Army would be formed to support and defend that which would later be enshrined in our rule of law, our Constitution, which is the embodiment of our Republic, and its citizens.

Over the years we have seen men and women make the last full measure of devotion to ensure that this “last best hope for mankind” should not perish from the earth. As well, when called upon, our Army has deployed to foreign lands, soil, to seek out the noblest of causes, “De Oppresso Liber,” the motto of our US Army Special Forces . . . to Liberate the Oppressed.

For some they call this “Pride Month,” but I just gotta tell ya, today and every day I have a distinct and unique pride and that is because I will always have the title of United States Soldier.

To all my brother and sister Soldiers, past, present, and future, today is our special day. But, every day is our Pride Day because we have stood as “Watchmen on the Walls” on days great and not so great to do one thing: honoring our motto, “This We’ll Defend.” True Soldiers never stop defending the honor of our nation, in uniform, or out. Our oath has no statute of limitations, it never ends, until the day we reach our last duty station and we are reunited with ol’ Soldiers who have gone on before us.

Happy 244th Birthday to our United States Army, to my fellow Soldiers. We are the ones who defend the dreams and aspirations of others.

Photo of Aubrey West, PAAnd, to that end, the other reason why today is a freaking awesome day is that I get to see my oldest daughter achieve her dream.

I am disgusted when certain politicians seek to associate the word “dreamers” with a certain demographic all for self-serving political and electoral gain. Every doggone American child is a “Dreamer.”

Some of us dream to be Soldiers, as was my story. But, our daughter Aubrey had a dream to be a Physician Assistant, and, today at West Liberty University in Wheeling, West Virginia, her dream will be attained this evening. Yes, I am truly a proud dad this day. I cannot think of a better Father’s Day gift that for us to be gathered as a family watching Aubrey’s phenomenal achievement of earning her second Master’s degree as a Physician Assistant.

It seems like just yesterday that this little 5lb, 4oz bundle of love came into the world, April 9, 1993. She has grown into a beautiful, strong, focused, resolute, and intelligent woman. Yes, takes after her mom. Aubrey gets her stubbornness from me. Eight years ago she graduated from Archbishop McCarthy HS in South Florida, then Nova Southeastern University, and completed her first Master’s in Molecular and Cellular Biology from Southern Methodist University.The West family celebrates Aubrey's graduation from her first Master's degree program

Aubrey West, high school graduationThis is what we Soldiers are born and raised to defend, the dreams of others. We are called to provide that secure and safe environment for our children and grandchildren to thrive. We defend the right of our kids, like Aubrey, to go out and succeed, or perhaps fail, but never quit. I have held Aubrey at times of sorrow and celebrated with her at times of immense joy, but she has honored me, and the sacrifice of so many, by continuing to seek her goals, aspirations, and dreams.

And to think, Aubrey is the granddaughter of two men, US Army Soldiers, both combat veterans, both buried in National Cemeteries. My dad at Marietta (Georgia), and Angela’s dad in Arlington, World War II and Vietnam veterans. I can only imagine the incredible pride they have today in their lovely granddaughter, Aubrey.

This, folks, is what our America is all about. Not someone determining our outcomes, but rather remembering, honoring, those who are part of an organization that defends our individual rights, freedoms, and liberty to allow generations upon generation of American dreamers.

What a freaking awesome day to be a Soldier . . . and Aubrey’s dad!

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