Big thank you to our military veterans

Getting to know personally the men and women of the U.S. military has been the true highlight of my two decades in this industry. It’s been a privilege to cover and learn about the technology that helps keep them safe and helps them protect us and our nation.

We at and OpenSystems Media wish every veteran and those who still wear the uniform a Happy Veteran’s Day and a big thank you for your service. The technological wonders we write about in our magazines, newsletters, pale next to your courage and sacrifice.

On a personal note I remember today the veterans who have touched my life over the years starting with my grandfather, Albert Volpe, an Italian immigrant who served for the U.S. Army in World War I, my late mentor and friend Ron Mastro who served on in the 1960s, my father-in-law, Elliot, who jumped out of airplanes for the Army back in the 1950s, and my cousin Steven Caucci, who lost his life during Vietnam, and whom I never met but my Mother never forgot.

I am also lucky to work with a couple veterans — Jerry Gipper, an Air Force vet who runs our magazine and is executive director of VITA — and last but not least, my newest colleague Mariana Iriarte.Mariana is a retired Navy electrician turned writer. We are thrilled to have her on our team and thank her and Jerry for their service.

Pictured is our oldest living veteran, retired Army Lt. Col. Luta C. McGrath, aged 108, receiving a standing ovation after President Barack Obama mentioned her today during a ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Va., Nov. 11, 2015. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Patrick Kelley.

I encourage you to thank a veteran not just today but any day and anywhere you see one whether in an airport, train station, restaurant, church, etc. They deserve it and they will appreciate it.

Another way to show your support is through the many charities that aid military veterans and their families. Below are some we at OpenSystems Media support. Click on each for more information.

- Wounded Warriors

- Homes For Our Troops

- Folds of Honor Foundation

- The Salute Military Golf Association (SMGA)

- The Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation

- Veterans Workshop

- House of Heroes

- Troops First Foundation

- The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund

- The Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society

- Home Base Program

- AMVETS National Service Foundation