November 11th was designated Veterans Day– to recognize and honor our veterans. This year our nation has been polarized and divided, yet we are in respectful agreement about the valuable service of our veterans. Veterans always remain above the fray of petty political whims and self-interests. When called upon, they put aside all personal politics, taking up the greater importance of protecting the United States. Sacrificing all, Veterans are the cohesive force that made our country strong in the past and continue to make America great today.
Veteran’s Day crosses every line – race, gender, age, national origin, religion, and political affiliation. Generations of Americans, from every walk of life, selflessly defend the United States and fellow Americans through their service to our country. Many made the ultimate sacrifice- giving their lives protecting the liberties that we often take for granted most days.
Veterans Day should not be confused with Memorial Day which pays tribute to American service members who lost their lives serving in the military. This one day in America is set aside to honor all U.S. military veterans, past and present, which served honorably protecting our liberties and way of life.
The Significance of 11
Veterans Day first came about on November 11, 1919 then called Armistice Day – to mark the armistice signed between the Allies of World War I and Germany signifying the end of hostilities on the Western Front of that war. This Armistice took effect at eleven o’clock in the morning – the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” of 1918. For this reason it is always observed on the 11th of November.
The Father of Veterans Day
In 1945, World War II veteran Raymond Weeks had the idea to expand Armistice Day to celebrate all veterans. He led a delegation to Washington and convinced President Eisenhower to do so. It took several years, but in 1954 the bill was signed into law and November 11th became known as Veterans Day. Today, Weeks is known as the “Father of Veterans Day”.
People in many parts of the world still observe a moment of silence at 11 a.m. as a sign of respect for the people who died in war and to the living left behind.
Please take a moment
On November 11th, please take a moment to say a silent thank you for the brave men and women who serve our country. Extend your gratitude to the families who endure the hardships and provide support to their loved ones who are in military service. And never forget that the freedoms we enjoy came at great personal courage from our veterans.
Happy Veteran’s Day!