Imagine how hard it is to get to the NBA. The sacrifices you have to make. The sweat you need to leave on the floor.

Now imagine you put in all that work, became the best player in college ball—all while serving in the US Naval Academy.

Serving our country is a greater sacrifice than most of us will ever know, but that’s exactly what David Robinson did. Robinson wasn’t highly recruited out of high school, but he spent the next six years working himself into the top prospect in basketball, all while balancing his military obligations. That’s right, six years, not four—after being drafted first overall by the Spurs in 1987, “The Admiral” spent two years in active duty and didn’t debut with San Antonio until ’89. It’s sacrifice on top of sacrifice.

In honor of Veterans Day, Robinson, who also participates in the NBA’s Hoops for Troops campaign, joined President Obama at a wreath-laying ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns in Washington, D.C. Read USA Today’s full article here, and have a happy Veterans Day. If we can learn even a little from our veterans, we’d be better players—and, of course, better people.