By UTU International President Mike Futhey

The devastating news that Staff Sgt. Amy Seyboth Tirador, 29, daughter of UTU Local 95 (Rensselaer, N.Y.) member Gerard Seyboth, died in Iraq brings all too close to home the sacrifices being borne by brave American soldiers stationed around the globe to protect our nation and our way of life.

Amy brought brains along with bravery to battle. She was an Arabic-speaking interrogator on her second tour of duty in Iraq, and had been credited, during her first tour of duty in Iraq, where she served as a medic, with saving the life of a fellow soldier shot in battle.

Our hearts go out to Amy’s family and friends. There is scant solace in knowing one’s child and family member is a true American hero when grief is so overwhelmingly devastating.

As we celebrate this Veteran’s Day, Nov. 11, we honor each brave American soldier who made the supreme sacrifice in defense of the liberties Americans so cherish.

Our nation was born in revolutionary war; and war, unfortunately, is a continuing price we pay to preserve liberties that, in the long history of humankind, are so scarce and are too often smothered by tyrants.

Within our UTU family, there is an innumerable caravan of brave soldiers who have given their lives in defense of our nation and our way of life, and their sacrifices are rightfully recognized on monuments and plaques across America.

Scores of UTU members, their children and spouses are currently serving on active duty, or recently returned from active duty. More than 100 current UTU members are on active duty.

During 2010, we will be recognizing many of those soldiers on the pages of the UTU News. If you have a family member who has recently served, or is serving, in the armed forces, please forward that information to our public relations department, along with a photo of that soldier in uniform.

The profession of arms too often is a thankless one. So please, on this Veteran’s Day, join me in taking a moment of silence to honor their faithful service and sacrifice.

And when you see a soldier in uniform, as we so often do, consider offering them a warm smile and a heartfelt, ‘thank you.’

God bless them all, and God bless the United States of America.