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Archive for the ‘veterans day’ Category

From Armistice Day to Veterans Day: A Celebration of Soldiers

Monday, November 10th, 2008

Our soldiers — past and present — are a national treasure. They serve and fight in places where the majority of American citizens would never dare to tread.

They are our heroes.

The history of Veterans Day is simple, but profound. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11th, 1919, as the first Armistice Day — one year after an armistice, or cease-fire, ended the hostilities during World War I.

November 11th was set aside each year to honor the soldiers who fought against Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria and Turkey in that ’Great War’, also known as the “war to end all wars”.

In 1938, Armistice Day became a legal holiday. But when World War II came along and involved such a massive effort of manpower — approximately 100 million Allies and Axis soldiers, it was time for a change. So in 1954, during President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s term, Congresss passed an amendment changing the word “Armistice” to the word “Veterans”.

Armistice Day then became Veterans Day, which honors the U.S. veterans of all wars.

The debt of gratitude owed to the members of the nation’s military service members can never be repaid; but the debt owed to those who fought and still fight on foreign soil is a priceless gift of sacrifice.

President Eisenhower once said: “History does not long entrust the care of freedom to the weak or the timid.” He was right.

May we always honor and remember those who stood strong and courageous and to whom we owe our precious freedoms.

military, Veterans Day, soldiers, veterans, heroes, World War I, World War II, freedom, Armistice Day, Americans, U.S., United States

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