Skip to comments.Hand Signal Pays Respect to Soldiers in Uniform
Posted on 06/27/2008 10:16:20 AM PDT by BulletBobCo
SEATTLE, Wash-- A Seattle man started a trend that pays respect to soldiers in uniform when they are in public places like airports. Since launching a website in September he's received millions of web hits.
The trend is called the Gratitude Campaign and it all starts with a hand signal that you can do anytime you see a soldier in uniform. The signal is a new way to thank soldiers for their service without having to interrupt them or make them feel uncomfortable.
Soldiers in the 81st Heavy Brigade Combat team are preparing to leave for Iraq in August. They will be travelling through commercial airports and are getting familiar with the hand signal.
"It's an easy way to say thank you without having to feel that awkwardness because I know for some guys and some of my friends in the military its sometimes hard to know what to say back," said Donald Nelson, U.S. Army Delta Company.
The founder of the Gratitude Campaign says all you have to do is put your hand on your heart and then move your arm down. He chose the heart rather than the American Sign Language 'thank you' from the chin because he says nothing from the heart can be seen as offensive.
"We switched to the sign that starts at the heart thinking that even if you didn't know what that means anything that comes from the heart is probably a good thing," said Scott Truitt, Founder of Gratitude Campaign.
Since launching a website the Gratitude Campaign has gained national attention, being played on digital billboards in New York City and having eight million video downloads.
"It would be a little bit easier to recognize that then somebody coming up and making you feel awkward when they thank you," said Vincient Reil, U.S. Army Private.
Soldiers from the National Guard in Pasco say they like the hand signal because it is easier than stopping them in the airport and less awkward.
"I think just like everybody else, if I could leave today and get it over with I'd just as soon do that but I'm excited, trying to get my team prepared and trying to get my guys ready," said Thomas Wynecobb, U.S. Army Platoon Leader.
If you walk past a soldier try the hand signal and show him you're thankful he's serving our country.
Not a bad idea.
Thanks for the post. I’ll do it when apropriate. Whenever I see someone in uniform, I always shake their hand and thank them.
We get signal!
I saw this video and here’s my thought on it. I suppose that when one lives in an ultra liberal area like Seattle, one may be intimidated by all the libtards in showing proper respect and gratitude to our troops.
For me, when I come across one of our brave and wonderful troops, I make no bones at all about doing up to them and proudly offering my support, gratitude and respect for their sacrifice and dedication. To do less than that by cowering to the “PC” bullsh*t, is a disservice to our troops.
If some liberal scumbag has a problem with that, they can kiss my MARINE CORPS a$$ at their own peril.
I still like the romulan salute.
I will still say thank you. This hand signal is not for me.
That’s very nice. Perhaps I’ll start using it as a counterpoint to the salute I usually give anti-war protesters.
Wow. That is brilliant.
I’ve always wanted to salute them...but I think this would be more appropriate.
Thank you, I have sent it to several dozen other people.
Works on squids, flyboys, and soldiers too.
I can see myself flubbing this hand signal and getting a WTF look back. I’ll stick to plain old talking.
Take a page from WWII - salute a vet if you are a vet.. I do.
IF not, an old standby, the “Thumbs up” works well.
“If some liberal scumbag has a problem with that, they can kiss my MARINE CORPS a$$ at their own peril.”
Thank You Sir!
Well, I still salute. I believe they just changed the rules(law?) that allows you to salute in civilian clothes. I think Reagan started returning salutes, followed by the presidents succeeding him but it didn’t have any official status so they finally caught up with it. I believe it allows you render the hand salute to the colors as well and during the national anthem.
I salute publicly and will buy drinks for them when I can.
That it does. Take if from an old squid, getting a Semper Fi from a Marine is just about as good as you can do. BTT.
Don’t complicate a good thing—leave that to those who fail to grok the simplest of things!
That’s really great.
I am a two tour, twice wounded Vietnam veteran....
It has been my honor to buy a little gas for a few military personnel in Morehead City...More than a few checks picked up in some resturants... and if only a short thank you and a little reminder that I will refuse to allow these people to face what I and my fellow veterans faced when returning from SE Asia...
I will not allow these warriors to be slighted....
HooRah, HooYah, Ooooah, and Semper Fi........
I ask all my brothers of our war to try and do the same...
Me too. We gotta make this salute as well used and normal as an everyday thing, so it will come natural.
Nothing wrong with a casual, informal salute as a greeting. Like a wave, towards the brow but without the "pause" of a formal salute.
Not appropriate in uniform of course, but from a civilian or veteran it looks fine and the meaning is crystal clear.
Army salutes indoors when reporting, otherwise only in headgear.
Lower initiates salute and holds until higher returns and drops.
If you are in civilian clothes, a quick "thrown" salute will not inconvenience because I would not return, but acknowledge with thanks or smile.
I guess a simple thumbs up is too hard?
“Semper Fi, Marine!” has left some of them grasping for words or almost in tears. It is the “universal code” of thanks. Works for everybody too, Bill.
Eye contact with a nice smile are good too.
I don’t know if I’d be comfortable with this. Great idea but I think it would feel akward, at least at first. If in proximity, “welcome home” works well.
I don't think that that is too hard. My opinion is that anything that anyone does to show that they are appreciative of a veteran's service to their country is appropriate.
Thank you for serving our country, Boonie. Husband does just what you do. Lunches, beer, and even a couple sky-dive jumps to our service men, he is an old wanna-be airborne at heart.
Yo, Howie, thanks for your service...but...
As the story says, this simple gesture lets the soldiers off easy. They don’t have to talk to us, all they have to do is RECEIVE our thanks. It’s about the soldier’s comfort, not our need to be recognized for recognizing their service.
Does that make sense?
(psst....how come only part of you is a Marine? I didn’t know they did partials! LOL!)
Semper fi mac
Semper Fi and thanks for your service in Vietnam! That was my war (I am in my 50’s.) I could not understand why the boys coming back from SE Asia were being disrespected. That was a horrible place to be.
“As the story says, this simple gesture lets the soldiers off easy. They dont have to talk to us, all they have to do is RECEIVE our thanks. Its about the soldiers comfort, not our need to be recognized for recognizing their service.”
I can assure you that the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Coasties and Marines would not feel uncomfortable in having somebody who is genuine and open in showing their gratitude, support and respect.
In far too many cases those that have no sense of gratitude, appreciation or respect for our troops make no bones at all in expressing their opinions and hostility in a very public and rude manner. Perhaps it is those “people” that should find a “covert” way of doing so. I will also say that where they have a right to express themselves, I retain my right to express my contempt and disdain for them.
Don’t fret....I am and will remain 100% MARINE.
PS: I appreciate your thanks.
(heh, thought you said your a$$ was Marine!!!)
Ah, love Friday afternoons!
I like a thumb’s up.
When people thank me for my service, especially in Viet Nam, I just tell them, “My privilege!”