06/20/2009 05:12 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Make Memorial Day Meaningful

I'm a pretty good shopper, so I know that Memorial Day is a great shopping day. But I'm also the child of a proud military family, and I know that we need to make holidays like Memorial Day and Veterans' Day more than just another chance to buy things on sale.

My family has served in the military dating back at least four generations, so I can truly appreciate the sacrifices made by those men and women who have fought so courageously in defense of freedom. Getting deployed changes a family irrevocably, and the veterans returning with injuries -- both the obvious physical ones as well as the invisible psychological ones -- and their families so need our support.

That's why I decided to become the national spokesperson for Beyond Tribute, the first-ever nationwide grassroots initiative specifically focusing on using Memorial Day and Veterans' Day to raise awareness and funds for research, treatment, and support for Armed Service veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), and other neurological afflictions.

I recorded a short video promoting Beyond Tribute, and I encourage you to watch it. But the most important thing any of us can do is sign the pledge to shop at Beyond Tribute business and event partners over the holidays.

By Veterans Day, we hope to be able to raise significant money for veterans in need from the very businesses that usually capitalize on these solemn holidays. But before businesses will sign on, they need to see that people are committed to truly honoring, and actually helping, former service members.

I'm honored to have the opportunity to do something that helps the hundreds of thousands who continue to suffer the wounds of war long after the fighting on the battlefield has ended. They deserve our thanks, but most importantly, they deserve our help as they struggle to reclaim their lives.

Sign the Beyond Tribute pledge today.