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What Independence Day Means To Us

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Everything that is really great and inspiring is created by the individual who can labor in freedom.
Albert Einstein

Independence Day is one of our favorite holidays!  And what’s not to love?  Fireworks, picnics, time with family and friends.  But the significance of the holiday and what it really means isn’t lost on us either.  To commemorate this year’s celebration of our Independence, we asked our team what Independence Day means to them.  Here’s what they told us.

To me the 4th of July is a time to reflect back on our Founders’ vision of freedom for all Americans, and is a time to be thankful.
– Valerie

Family, unity, hot dogs and pop. Fresh cut grass covered by your blanket, picnic baskets, frisbees and glo sticks. Dunk tanks, silly games, baked goods for sale and the base band playing music and people dancing on the football field. The long awaited anticipation of fireworks as the sun sets over the horizon. My days growing up were spent on military bases. At 7:00 am and 4:30 pm every day we stood at attention while Reveille, Retreat and the National Anthem are played. I grew up placing my hand over my heart. Giving our country, our flag the respect it deserves. My heart aches for soldiers lost to keep our country safe but it swells with pride in knowing the people who stand and fight for our freedom. To me the 4th of July is a lot of things but mostly it is a day to remember, a day of tradition and day of being proud to be an American.
– Terri

american flag

I love Independence Day. It is a time we remember why people left their homes to go to a country across the ocean. They came to the U.S. to escape persecution and to be free to be who they are. They still come to this day. Freedom is not universal. If you are not free, you desire you be so. My family came here to escape religious hatred in the 1930’s.  We need to remember that persecution still exists. On July 4th we remember that it is our responsibility to fight for ourselves and for those who can not fight. I am proud to be an American, for at least I know I am free.
– Debbie

For me, the 4th of July means celebrating freedom and the men and women who make it all possible.  Both of my grandfathers served in wars overseas.  Many of my friends have also served, and currently serve.  It is a sacrifice, not only for those who put on the uniforms, but for the families they have to leave behind.  My deepest respect and admiration goes out to our military personnel and their families – past, present and future.
– Cyndi

The 4th reminds me of how proud I am to be an American citizen and thankful for all those that have and are keeping us safe and allowing me my freedoms. Fireworks, hot dogs, swimming and family are what I cherish most on my favorite holiday!
– Jennifer

The 4th is a day to reflect on the rights that our founders fought to obtain and that we must continue to protect.
– Taylor

To me the 4th is about freedom. Freedom of choice, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, and freedom of expression. The 4th is also a tribute to those who protect and have protected our freedoms – our men and women serving in the military. Thank you!!!
– Brooke

lady liberty

Our tradition is to hold a back yard BBQ with friends and family. It’s a fun day full of great food, great people and little feet running in and out of the pool. At the end of the day we ride bikes over to the park and watch fireworks. At some point in the day I personally try to step back and take it all in. It’s easy to take for granted the freedoms we have. The founding fathers had such grand dreams for this country. Many men and woman have fought to keep those freedoms – some in uniform and some in every day street clothes living every day lives. I’m grateful for the dreams, the fight and the life I get to live.
– Nicole

The 4th of July means family, friends and BBQ to most. But, to Jill and me, it means friendship. Celebrating our independence has become celebrating and spending quality time with those you love. DT gives us that opportunity to build long lasting friendships at work, to then work hard and play hard. We won’t mention that we have mastered that skill.
– Tracey and Jill

The Fourth of July casts an extra light on the freedoms that Americans have daily that some can only dream of having in their country. Every time someone sings the Star Spangled Banner and the flag is flying, it leaves a lump in my throat. I realize that I am so fortunate to live in the greatest country on earth. I am forever grateful to those who’ve gone before us and for those who continue to protect us and defend our freedom and liberties. Thank you to our awesome and powerful military. Our oldest son was born on July 4th so it makes the day even MORE special for our family.
– Lauren

betsy ross

Our health and independence is something we take for granted, yet we should feel fortunate each day that we wake up to have both.  I have never tied Independence to health, but they are very related. When you are unhealthy, you become extremely dependent on doctors, support systems, and medication to get you through the day.  You really do lose your independence, and you lose your ability to control pretty much anything in your life.  The 4th this year will be a very special celebration for me!
– Loren

To me, the fourth of July is a time to take a break from everyday life, and to celebrate with family and friends. It’s a day to reflect on how lucky we are to live in a place where we are free to live our lives as we chose to, and where we are blessed to be surrounded by diversity and many different avenues of opportunity.
– Jami

Although it’s synonymous with hot dogs, barbecues and fireworks, the 4th of July can easily be summed up in one word: freedom. Independence Day is all about everything Americana and celebrating the many liberties were are afforded as citizens of the United States. It means honoring the service men and women who fight to keep our freedoms in place every day of the year; not just on this special holiday.
– Melissa H.

eagle

As I think of the 4th of July, a series of special thoughts, memories, and recollections come to mind:
-Pride associated with being an Air Force brat born on Clark Air Force Base and forever reminding people that although I was born in the Philippines, the base is/was still considered “US soil” for citizenship purposes.
-Memories of my father’s gravestone which is partially inscribed with “United States Soldier-Korea”
-Strength associated with training with the Army Rangers at the “Ranger Gym” in Savannah, Ga. (I was a lowly college student who lifted weights and ran with a Ranger buddy).
-Thankfulness as a few of those same Ranger buddies went off to fight in Gulf War I… enabling me to continue my life safe and far behind enemy lines.
-Steve

Fourth of July is all about family and a sense of gratitude that my family (and I) are fortunate to live in a country where our freedoms are protected and valued.
– Cindy

Happy Independence Day from all of us at Decision Toolbox!

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