Some may think Veterans Day, Monday, November 11th commemorates great victories…or honors great war heroes…or even glorifies wars.

Veterans Day is much more than that. It honors ALL military-those who served their country when asked-and the many who died.

This memorial ceremony is observed throughout the U.S. and internationally; England at the Westminster Abbey, France at the Arc de Triumph, and in Canada and Australia they observe “Remembrance Day.” These memorials all take place on November 11th, giving universal recognition to the ending of World War I fighting at 11am, November 11, 1918 (the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month).

That day became known as “Armistice Day” in the U.S. in 1926. If World War I had become the war to end all wars, November 11th might still be called Armistice Day. But war broke out again. World War II required the greatest mobilization of soldiers, sailors, marines, and airmen in the nation’s history. And after American forces had fought aggression in Korea, a proposal was made by Kansas Representative Edwin K. Rees to change Armistice Day to Veterans Day to honor ALL those that serve our country. In 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the bill declaring November 11th as Veterans Day.

Nationally, Veterans Day Ceremonies are held at the Arlington National Cemetery where the tomb of the “unknown soldier” lies. At 11am, on November 11th a color guard representing all military services executes “Present Arms” at the tomb. The laying of a presidential wreath and “taps” is played along with a ceremony.

Locally, in Fort Wayne Veterans Day will be observed on Saturday, November Beginning at 11am, Commander Doug Boren, AMVETS Post #33 will emcee the parade that proceeds down Parnell Avenue to the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum. At noon, following the parade, there will be a special program to rededicate the Coliseum and honor all veterans. The U.S. Navy Band, Snider High School Band and the Elmhurst Band will participate, along with AMVETS Post #33 Color Guard as host unit for this grand event. The Concordia Band members will usher. This special event and parking is free.

Since the Revolution, ordinary citizens have quietly put their affairs in order, kissed their family goodbye and put on uniforms. That takes courage. As we celebrate Veterans Day, keep in mind the enormous debt we owe to the veterans of this nation.

While those who died are also remembered on Veterans Day, Veterans Day is the day set aside to thank and honor ALL who have served honorably in the military-in wartime and peacetime. Let’s honor our veterans. Attend a parade, a special memorial service, display our American flag, show our appreciation, thank them for our freedom today and everyday!

The Waynedale News Staff
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Cindy Cornwell

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