We mutually pledge to each other our lives

by Brig. Gen. Mark Dillon
86th Airlift Wing commander

“And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor.” — the last line of the Declaration of Independence.

In the early days of the summer of 1776, a group of representatives from the Continental Congress had a crucial decision to make: either submit to the unreasonable demands of the monarchy or take up arms and fight for their independence. They chose the more difficult decision — to fight for freedom. Now, more than 235 years later, we continue their fight and we celebrate their decision.
Our founders’ vision of a better future gave them the resolve to take on the mighty British Empire and prevail. America was a country founded on an ideal — freedom.

And with that freedom Americans “are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”  
The nation we defend today became a reality through freedom loving people, men and women in uniform, who have continued to serve, just like our founders.
I can’t tell you how proud this Airman is to serve beside you every day. You play a vital role in defending freedom’s future here in Europe, Africa and beyond.
You enable critical mobility and cyber and contingency response capability around the globe for our Air Force, our nation and our allies.

So, as we celebrate this Independence Day, I know you are proud Americans. I encourage you to be especially proud of the sacrifices you and your family are making by serving our Air Force. America today remains a beacon of hope around the world because you — like America’s founders — are willing to “mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor” for that freedom.  
Happy Independence Day. And, as always, thank you and your families for serving our great nation.