As yesterday was Veterans Day, I feel it is appropriate to talk about the veterans in my life and what they mean to me. I have always had an appreciation for those who serve and fight for my freedom but it wasn't until I visited my brother in Washington D.C. over Memorial Day Weekend that I truly took the time to try to understand all they as well as their families sacrifice to protect this wonderful country we live in. While I was in DC I got to talk to my brother who is a captain in the army and my marine cousin, who was visiting as well. I learned a lot about what they have done and gone through to get where they are. We were able to see a lot of historical sites and went to a lot of places that opened up my eyes to how many have served and sacrificed for us Americans. Towards the end of the trip my brother had us watch Saving Private Ryan which truly touched me and really put into perspective the hardships those in the military go through with out much recognition at all. Here are some pictures I took while in DC of the many things I saw that deepened my appreciation and respect for those who so honorably fight for your and my freedom. 
^^^ The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier vvv
^^^ My cousin Colby on the left and my brother Justin in the middle. Thank you for your service!^^^
^^^ So many names vvv
With all of that said, there is one veteran in my life who is my most beloved. This veteran would be my grandpa, Deloy Chad Olsen. This post is in honor of him and all he did and still does for my family and me. 
Is he not the cutest thing you've ever seen? I can say that because he was 15 in this picture! My grandpa left his home at the age of 14 (soon to be 15). He said he was done with the 10th grade, hitch hiked around the west and eventually made it to Colorado where he lied about his age and signed up for the army! Crazy huh? While in the army my grandpa decided to do "jump school" which trains those soldiers to jump out of planes. This point in my grandpa's army career was pivotal as he was of the 2 of the 5 in his training that was courageous enough to go through with the entire training. The others got kicked out of the army and were sent home. While in the army my grandpa was fortunate enough to never have to fight in a battle (he wasn't too happy with it at the time though). Instead he got to travel all over the world and was of the soldiers that occupied Japan. While in Japan my grandfather was tutored by a prominent Japanese leader that my grandpa attributes a lot his success to. 
Once my grandfather got out of the army he used the GI Bill and got an education. He now has a bachelor's degree and 2 master's degrees! ... I honestly cannot remember what they are all in but he ended up being an aeronautical engineer and designed parts on some space shuttles! He married my grandmother, took her to live in California and had 5 wild kids (I can also say that because one of them is my dad :) ) My grandfather made a beautiful wonderful life for himself and his family. I will forever be grateful for all my grandfather sacrificed and went through so I could have the life I do today. You may or may not learn from our blog but our parents struggled a lot and could not always support us financially. At a young age my grandfather told me he would do all he could to get me to college and that I could pick any school I wanted to go to. I'm seriously about to cry thinking about it. I owe so much to this amazing veteran. I would not have all of the wonderful things in my life if it weren't for him helping me out. I'm not sure if I would have even graduated from college, I possibly would have never come out to Utah which means I wouldn't have married Clark. I wouldn't have my job if it weren't for my degree. My life would be so different and like I said before I owe it to my wonderful amazing grandfather who decided to go to the army and make something of his own life for his family.  

Happy {belated} Veterans Day! Take a step back and look around at those who have made it possible for you to be living the life you are today. Thank you to all that have served and fought for our country! 
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  1. Great article you've penned Kaylee, I really enjoyed it!
    Love Uncle Kevin

  2. Such an incredible article, some of my favorite guys in the whole world..especially grandpa.

  3. I love the pics.!! How have I not seen some of these before?!

  4. That is so well done... Good job Kaylee! Thanks for sharing


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