Tomorrow, we celebrate Veteran’s Day. This honor extends to anyone who has ever stood somberly, raised his or her right hand, and enlisted in any branch of the U.S. military (while swearing to “support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic”).
Veteran’s Day was established to honor ALL those who served honorably in the military. It doesn’t matter if the veteran served in wartime or saw combat. (For the record, Memorial Day, which is celebrated on the last Monday in May, is set aside to honor those military personnel who died in the service of their country.)
Interestingly, President Woodrow Wilson announced in 1919 that November 11 would be called Armistice Day because a temporary peace and the end of fighting in World War I ended at 11 AM on the 11th day of the 11th month … November 11, 1918.
Here are a few interesting facts about Veterans Day:
- In 1938, Armistice Day became a federal holiday in the United States.
- It was changed to Veterans Day in 1954 to honor all veterans of all wars including World War II and the Korean War.
- General Patton, the famous World War II general was born on November 11.
- There are about 19 million living US veterans with an average age of 58.
- California, Texas and Florida each have close to 1.5 million veterans living in their state.
So, today we extend our heartfelt THANK YOU to the veterans who have served our country.
If you know a veteran, take a few minutes to call them and thank them for their service. If you see a soldier or veteran, thank them for their service. Buy him or her lunch or coffee if you can. It’s a small thing but it’s a tangible and visible way to show your support and respect.
If nothing else, take a moment today to remember the sacrifices they have made through the years … and continue to make every day … at great risk … but with an unwavering dedication to the service of their country and to our safety and well-being.