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10 November 2011

Rupp: Honoring Those Who Serve Our Country

As citizens of this country, we have so many privileges and blessings that we often take for granted. We have the freedom of speech, the right to elect our country’s leader, and the ability to encourage our children to be whatever they’d like to be when they grow up. As our former president Ronald Reagan once said, “Freedom is one of the deepest and noblest aspirations of the human spirit.” While we are fortunate to enjoy countless freedoms, it is important to remember that freedom isn’t free. We have the opportunity to benefit from a high quality of life because of our armed forces who continuously put their lives on the line to protect us and our great nation.

This Friday — Veterans Day — serves as a reminder that we should appreciate our troops and veterans year-round for their courage, and we should never forget the sacrifices so many men and women have made for us. I encourage you to take the opportunity this week to thank a veteran and a member of the armed forces, or observe a moment of silence to remember how lucky we are to live in America.

I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank all the police officers who serve us in the 2nd Senatorial District. These heroes put their community as their top priority every day, not just because it’s their job, but because they care about the well-being and safety of their neighbors. An officer from the O’Fallon Police Department, Steven M. Landsness, was awarded the Missouri Medal of Valor last week at our State Capitol. This is the highest honor that can be awarded to a law-enforcement officer. Mr. Landsness, along with seven other officers from across Missouri, were recognized for their acts of bravery that saved the lives of their fellow Missourians in 2010. I am so proud of Mr. Landsness’ accomplishment, and am grateful for his service to our area.

Once again, to all our veterans and servicemen and women, thank you for your bravery and selflessness. Our country would not be as strong as it is without heroes like you, and your noble acts will forever be remembered. May God bless you always.

As always, if you have any inquiries regarding this issue or any other matter within state government, please feel free to e-mail me or call my office toll-free at (866) 271-2844. You can also visit my website at Here, you can keep up to date on all my columns, press releases, and multimedia postings.

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