The 2016 election has just wrapped up and the results have the world in shock. The message from the media and the current administration is that elections (even ones as historic as this one) are what democracy is all about and to never under estimate the power that comes with that. The freedom to vote is a privilege and an honor, one that we can thank men and women in uniform for protecting. Appropriately, this week rounds out with Veterans Day, so let’s not forgot whose time, efforts and sacrifice afford us the opportunity to vote for whom we chose and continue to live a life of freedom and prosperity. The Pool Scouts headquarters resides in Virginia Beach, VA is right down the street from the world’s largest naval bases. Team members from operations like our Chief Operating Officer, Brian Garrison, down to some of our Pool Technicians, Ralph and David, have all served in the Navy. Beyond those who have served themselves, we have many teammates whose family members are currently in the service, so many of the employees here understand the sacrifices service men and women make for our country. As Veterans Day approaches, I urge you to not only remember all veterans’ service, but also take a moment to ask them their story. Even the simple question of ‘why they chose to serve’ could be enlightening for you, and show your thanks by hearing their story. My mom is a veteran, and although I know it wasn’t always easy for her, I smile when I think about the stories she tells. The time she spent serving our country wasn’t without great stories we are all still telling! Upon completing nursing school in the middle of the Vietnam War, my mom enlisted as a Lieutenant in the Army. A nurse trained in acute, critical care, her first station was in Alaska. The first story I remember fondly is about her deployment. In typical military fashion, her deployment date was moved up which meant she also had to move up her wedding date with my dad. She shipped out two days after the wedding! The day she was to fly out, there was a terrible storm. While she was waiting to see if they were going to wait out the storm or take off, the pilot approached her and asked her for the orders. She was totally surprised and immediately told them they should ask someone else. Turns out, she was the ranking officer and the decision was hers. So they took off, typical of my mom to go for it! I’m immensely grateful for her service and dedication! My mom is just one example of how our service men and women commit and adjust during their time in the service. I am in awe of the tenacity she and so many others have and had to enlist in the midst of wartimes. There are so many amazing and interesting stories to glean from our veterans. So this Veterans Day, take a moment to thank those in your life who are serving or have served. Learn more about their experiences and be proud to know such strong individuals who represent our country!