Salute the Heroes

I went to Seaworld in Orlando yesterday and being in the 'military' they currently have a Hero Salute scheme going which allows 4 complimentary entry tickets to the theme park, costing about 160 quid. Bonus. Once inside we stopped for a bite to eat, and when I opened my wallet to pay, some observer behind me spotted my ID and insisted he paid for my scoff. Bonus. We went to watch the Killer Whale show, and during the warm up all US and UK military (not to forget any other allies) (their words not mine)and families were to stand up and be 'saluted' for their courage etc. This was welcomed with a huge round of applause which made me feel very proud to be in the Army, however there was no financial gain in this part of the day. Still a bonus.

Then I racked my brains for a time when I, or have been told by anyone else in the services, have been in the UK when such generosity has been shown, to no avail. We sometimes get denied access to Pubs, Clubs etc, and then there was that story not so long ago about the guy in Harrods.

The american public have got it spot on.

And I didn't even start on the military discount in most of the shops....
Sat what you like about the Yanks but when it comes to pride in their Forces they cannot be beaten. Seems a shame that it takes a lot of tragedies for the public in general to even acknowledge that this country has any Armed Forces.
I am off to Canada this christmas for a few weeks.I have been warned off that I may get the same sort of treatment.Yet in UK the sight of an MOD 90 on a night out is almost a flat'' not tonight mate were full'' welcome at most nightclubs.Hey maybe the SUN can do its bit for our Lads and Lasses, start a campaign for the general public and businesses to show there support for the armed forces by offering discounts etc etc .
Ummmm I wonder.
Similar thing happened to me, we had bought our tickets to the NASA space centre and were then told they were free! However we got a guided tour, lunch and some NASA goodies as a compimentary thank you " for being our brothers in arms" :oops: I was really embarrased at all the attention but Mrs WH and the kids lapped it up, worst part was the commentator asking my eldest boy if he was proud of his father (via mike and PA!) he said he was as he "kills all the baddies" que all the cheers and clapping from an already worked up audience and me just wanting the floor to open up...
Good on the Septics, the only thing the British public and media can do is slag "squaddies" (a name I hate) off or make bullsh1t reports up about them!!
Hear hear. If you're in America and they hear you're in the military - or a veteran - you get treated like a King.

But I wonder if one of the things is that in America they wear the uniform with pride at all times. Due to various things (egIRA) we're (or certainly I'm) just not used to wearing it out in public.

Also, eg, they wear it smartly. I've seen CCF wallahs where I live and they look a bag of teh proverbial, i'm afraid to report (as I used to be a member of said branch!).
Sat what you like about the Yanks but when it comes to pride in their Forces they cannot be beaten. Seems a shame that it takes a lot of tragedies for the public in general to even acknowledge that this country has any Armed Forces.
And which nation are you referring to?
Well, I recently got an e-mail from a (local paper) journo who personally thanked me for all I had done in the army.

I was gob-smacked!
excellent, I am joining the Legion of Frontierspersons, and booking the next flight out stateside. I am already drooling about the free meals and beers, leg-overs and concert tickets my walty uniform and shiny new medals will accrue....
The only time I was aware of public thanks in this country was when my unit got back from that little bit of unpleasantness in the South Atlantic many years ago. We were amongst the last of the Task Force back to the UK and still a large number of holidays were on offer to those who wanted them. I waited until all the lads had been given the opportunity to grab one before accepting, so there must have been a fair few available. As a result my then wife and I enjoyed a free week in a very passable hotel in Cornwall with the occasional drink thrown in by other guests. I was genuinely touched by people's generosity at the time. On the other hand there were nothing like the numbers of servicemen involved as more recently, and the engagement was brief and pretty popular throughout the country.
They do have it right in the states, but then they can wear the uniform in public, so the civvies get used to seeing it. I even hide my MOD 90 at the back of my wallet. They only see ours on Rememberence Sunday and if they go to London, but most of them proberbly don't equate the Guards with the Army.

Most of the Amricans I know hate the war, but realise the troops are doing the job for the govenment. Over here we are used as a stick to beat the govt with. A small, very loud, group can't distinguish between the policy makers and those that carry that policy out.
When we came back from GW1 we went into our local in Poole where the landlord said

''Oh your back then''

then lined up a bar full of beer and said ''Good to see you dig out!''

Good work fella!! More of the same please
When I got back from TELIC after 7 months I had the best welcome ever, a big sign outside my house saying Welcome Home Daddy and my wife and kids stood at the front door as I walked up the drive.....OUTSTANDING
Our civvies all know that they should be in the Armed Forces but aren't thus they feel ashamed to be in our presence - hence the lack of hospitality.
Just spent 2 years down in Texas and had occasion to be off base in uniform.

TWICE I was approached by Spam civvies (one a young kid and the other ui businessman) who shook my hand and thanked me for 'serving 'and working alongside their military.

Happens all the time on the streets of Britain (or does it)?

Didn't have the heart to tell the Yank civvies I was in Texas, living like a rock star on the back of good old British tax payers' pounds.

But hey-ho, you pick your branch you take your chance.

REMF On you crazy diamonds!
The Canucks and the Yanks do go balls-out for their Forces. Been incredibly lucky to do 2 tours in BATUS and the hospitality in the various Canadian Legions from Med Hat to Vancouver has been nothing short of outstanding. And America! Jeesus! They thought I was some sort of Van Damme type. Had to tell 'em I was a Reem out of pure embarrasement but they still didn't care. Fantastic.
I'm thinking of taking the family to the states next year, I don't want to take the pi55 out of their genuine respect for soldiers, both serving and 'veterans' ( not too comfortable with that title), but how would you go about getting these fabled discounts?

Do I just turn up at Disneyworld and whisper to the lady in the kiosk that I used to be in the Army?

I've got an AAC association card, will that do the job and get me a free hot dog?

Genuinely interested.

With the US is goes deeper than just respect for their forces - it's respect for their country. I was always amazed how many houses had a flag pole in the garden with the Stars & Stripes being proudly flown. They (most of them anyway) view their Armed Forces as the living embodiment of that pride.

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