We throw around the word "hero" as if heroism hangs on the discount store rack.
But true heroes are being remembered today: those selfless veterans who have put their civilian lives on hold - or have given them up forever - to keep us safe and free and able to enjoy the fruits of history's greatest nation.
Veterans Day is all the more meaningful this year as our Armed Forces struggle to free Iraq and Afghanistan from barbarians and tyrants.
Stop and thank a veteran today - stop and thank God today - for the blessings of liberty our veterans have helped ensure through the years. When such people leave their own families to train endlessly and then, in many cases, to travel to hostile lands to preserve the American way of life, that's a debt you cannot possibly fully repay.
America's fighting forces - volunteers all, and the best known to mankind - aren't always appreciated elsewhere. They darn sure better be appreciated here.
You have a special opportunity to show that appreciation today, and to meet a real hero: Medal of Honor recipient Jim Livingston will speak at Heroes Overlook at 10th and Riverwalk at 1 p.m.
An Augusta resident in his youth, the thrice-wounded Livingston commanded an already depleted unit in a dangerous rescue of another enemy-surrounded unit in Vietnam in 1968. The retired major general now lives in Mount Pleasant, S.C.
But rest assured: Mount Pleasant is pleasant only because people such as Maj. Gen. Livingston have made it so.