As the dust settles from the glorious fireworks displays celebrating the birth of our nation, thousands of brave American men and women remain deployed, protecting our country. While Independence Day has concluded, we can all work each day to honor the sacrifices made by our veterans and military members who dedicate their lives so that we may be free.

Service members throughout our nation’s history have protected and fought for our liberty and rights as a nation. Indiana is home to nearly 500,000 veterans who served and worked to protect our freedom, and we continue honoring and remembering each of their sacrifices and service to our country.

On July 19, a special event will take place at the Indiana War Memorial, Indianapolis. The Indiana War Memorials Foundation is hosting the 74th USS Indianapolis CA-35 Survivors’ Reunion. Those who would like to attend are welcome to reach out to me or the Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs at 844-480-0009.

As chair of the House Veteran Affairs and Public Safety Committee, I have lead efforts to help aid and honor our veterans. During the 2019 legislative session, I authored a new law calling for more oversight on Indiana’s Military Family Relief Fund to ensure fair and equal distribution of grant funds to Hoosier veterans who are qualified and in need of assistance.

I also supported a new law to better support Indiana’s veterans by providing tax relief. This law will phase in a full income tax exemption for military retirement pensions over four years, decreasing financial burdens on thousands of veterans. This will encourage veterans to live, work and retire in Indiana.

As your state representative, I remain committed to finding innovative solutions to ensure those who serve are taken care of, while active and after hanging up their uniforms. Many policy changes come directly from military members, so please reach out to me with input and ideas at h67@iga.in.gov or 317-234-9450. I hope you and your family had a memorable Fourth of July, and to those who served and are serving, thank you for preserving our life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

State Rep. Randy Frye (R-Greensburg) represents Ohio, Ripley and Switzerland counties, as well as portions of Decatur, Jennings, Jefferson and Dearborn counties.