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Valley students visit with veterans

Snoqualmie soldier Geoffrey Smigun let the "Soldier's Creed" ring loud and clear throughout the Cascade View Elementary gym, so students and fellow veterans could hear the pride in his voice.

"I am an American soldier," Smigun said. "I'm a warrior and a member of a team.

"I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life," said Smigun, who ended the creed with a hearty cry.

"You say it with as much pride as you have," he said. "It's something that I believe in."

Smigun, a U.S. Army specialist in computers, serves at Fort Lewis and frequently donates his own computer equipment to Cascade View.

He joined the military at age 34, "somewhat late in my life, because it was an opportunity I might miss."

"The job is worth it," he said. "My job is to defend the Constitution of the United States of America and to follow the orders of the president of the United States."

More specifically, his job is to make sure the computers that the Army uses are safe and secure, working in times of war and peace.

Most military personnel who serve, in the past and today, have made sacrifices to defend what they believe in, Smigun said. Some don't realize what they're sacrificing until after they've completed their service.

"I serve with people now who are 19 years old, who do it for the sense of adventure," he said. Later, they'll realize that "we're all making a big sacrifice to defend freedom, to defend the ones we love and the things that matter most to us. We do it because we love what we do.

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