One quote that I found is from an old Boston newspaper The New England Chronicle published by Samuel Hall. The author of the paragraph is unknown or is the printer as it is signed only "A Freeman". It is clearly encouragement for the army assembled at Boston in 1776, but it seems that it would work today. Thanks to my sons and all who serve or have served.
Your exertions in the cause of freedom, guided by wisdom and animated by zeal and courage, have gained you the love and confidence of your grateful countrymen; and they look to you, who are experienced veterans, and trust that you will still be the guardians of America. As I have the honor to be an American, and one among the free millions, who are defended by your valor, I would pay the tribute of thanks and express my gratitude, while I solicit you to continue in your present honorable and important station.