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I will never forget our vets

Three years ago this month, a convoy carrying U.S. Marine Sgt. Robert A. Hendriks was returning to base near Bagram airfield in Afghanistan when they were ambushed by a car loaded with explosives. Sgt. Hendriks, a proud son of Locust Valley, was killed in the attack, along with two of his brothers in arms.

Long Island lost a noble member of our community. America lost a dedicated soldier. And a mother lost her son.

Last year, I was honored to lead a community effort to rename a street in Locust Valley after Sgt. Hendriks.

It's this simple: Our heroes in uniform deserve to be honored.

That's why I fought to pass my Hiring Our Heroes Act in the legislature.

It's why, as the pandemic took root, my office began coordinating with local VFWs to deliver care packages and Covid tests to our vets.

It's why I'm taking on the VA as they try to close the Northport care facility.

And it's why, in Congress, I'll do more than honor our vets. Our service members are willing to make the ultimate sacrifice to serve our nation, and I will never stop fighting to make sure our nation is ready to serve them.

I keep a picture of Sgt. Robert Hendriks on my desk as a solemn reminder that public service is about sacrifice more than anything else. That's why it's incumbent on elected officials at every level of government to remember that what we do is a privilege.

In that picture, Sgt. Hendriks is sporting a shirt that reads "All it takes is all you got." In Congress, I'll give every veteran all I've got.

More to come,


Posted on April 13, 2022.
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