Veterans took a job that I doubt I could do, a job where they also increased their chances of getting shot at, or flat-out shot. They took on a tough life as well as a tough job, away from loved ones and home and often going to blasted places or the middle of oceans (I'm a Navy brat; the greatest part of my military experience was taking a Tiger cruise into the mid-Atlantic on the U.S.S. John F. Kennedy) to be vigilant. They dealt with separation. They dealt with boredom (and, I'm guessing, bad coffee). They dealt with often not being able to tell their loved ones exactly where they were, what they were doing or why. And they knew people who died doing their jobs alongside them, maybe right next to them.
Veterans did their job. Despite all the above, they soldiered through and did what they could as well as they could.