Whether a veteran has served for a lifetime or for a brief time, service in the armed forces deserves to be marked with honor, gratitude, and a very special military retirement gift.
Types of gifts
There are plenty of “off-the-rack” military retirement gift ideas for the “off-the-rack” retiring veteran. A desk set with branch insignia, a folded American flag in a display case, or a humidor of fine cigars are fine for the average military retiree and would be appreciated. But if this veteran is someone who is close to you, someone that you know fairly well, then take the time to research the possibilities and match a special gift to a special person.
Service in the military is rarely equated with sentimental emotionalism, but the men and woman of the four branches of the service hold their experiences deep within their hearts. The growth, training, and maturity that every veteran gains during their service leaves military memories as ones that are often deeply felt. When looking for a military retirement gift for even the gruffest of old war dogs, don’t overlook a poignant one.
Certificates, awards and photos can be framed and ready to adorn a study or packed for travel. Personalized frames with the emblems of the appropriate branch of the service can be ordered to add a unique and meaningful touch. An insignia ring that will be worn often and remind the wearer of his or her military past.
A practical gift doesn’t have to be a time share in the tropics or a new car. It simply should be something that serves a purpose with a reminder of a thoughtful gift-giver. A watch with the branch insignia is considerate and useful. It is stylish for a newly-minted civilian while telling people something about the wearer.
It can be that the retiring veteran in your life is someone who occupies an important place your life but a stranger because of military service. An uncle, cousin, mother-in-law or even a parent can be a mysterious figure to you because of long-term deployment in faraway places. A special gift can represent a promise of time to be spent together and lives revealed. An insignia afghan to comfort and warm, a framed poem, family photographs matted and framed are all unspoken promises of a future relationship.
The military retirement gift that you choose should show your respect. It should show that you understand that this milestone is a bridge between a comfortable past and a bewildering future. It should show that you think of this special veteran as a person with individual qualities and not a stereotype. Most of all, it should represent you. And it will if it comes from your heart.