What is Veterans Day?
Veterans Day is one of the official federal holidays in the USA, observed on the anniversary of the end of World War I, to honor those who have served in the country's armed services.
To pay tribute to and remember all US veterans, including those who have passed away while serving, retired, received an honorable discharge, and are now active-duty US military members. Veterans Day is different from Memorial Day as Memorial Day only pays homage to the heroes who died defending the country.
Veterans Day - All Quick Review
- Time/Date: November 11
- Category: Federal
- Where It's Marked: United States
- Why It's Marked: To honor and commemorate all US veterans, including those who have died during service, who retired, who were discharged under conditions other than dishonorable, and who are still serving in the US military.
- Correct Spelling: Though people commonly spell this holiday as Veteran's Day or Veterans' Day in advertisements and calendars, according to the website of the US Department of Veterans Affairs, the correct spelling is attributive (no apostrophe) rather than possessive because "it is not a day that "belongs" to veterans, it is a day for honoring all veterans.
History of Veterans Day
On June 28, 1919, the Treaty of Versailles was signed in the Palace of Versailles outside the French town of Versailles, which effectively ended World War I, or "The Great War," as it was known at the time. However, fighting had ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary hostilities stop, between the Allies and Germany took effect at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. Because of this, November 11, 1918, is typically considered the date when "the war to end all wars" officially ended.
President Wilson announced November 11 as the first Armistice Day in November 1919. The festival was initially intended to be a day of parades, public gatherings, and a temporary halt of businesses starting at 11:00 a.m.
The United States Congress passed a concurrent resolution on June 4, 1926, and officially declared the end of World War I. November 11 every year is now a legal holiday thanks to an act (52 Stat. 351; 5 US Code, Sec. 87a) adopted on May 13, 1938. This day is dedicated to promoting international peace and is now recognized as "Armistice Day." Armistice Day was originally designated as a day to honor veterans of World War I. At the request of the veterans' service organizations, the 83rd Congress changed the word "Armistice" in the Act of 1938 to "Veterans" in 1954. On June 1, 1954, Public Law 380 was approved, making November 11 a day set aside to honor all American veterans of all conflicts.
The Uniform Holiday Bill, which became law on June 28, 1968, as Public Law 90-363 (82 Stat. 250), mandated that four national holidays: Washington's Birthday, Veterans Day, Memorial Day, and Columbus Day—be observed on Mondays To allow government workers three-day weekends. These long weekends were intended to promote travel, leisure, and cultural activities and increase commercial and industrial output. So, as a result, Veterans Day was shifted to October and used to be observed on Monday.
On October 25, 1971, the first Veterans Day under the new statute was observed amid much misunderstanding. Since it was clear that many of the citizens found the commemoration of this day to be of historical and patriotic importance, President Gerald R. Ford signed Public Law 94-97 (89 Stat. 479) on September 20, 1975, to move the annual observance of Veterans Day back to November 11 starting in 1978. The vast majority of state legislatures, significant veterans service organizations, and the American people favored this measure.
Since then, no matter what day of the week it falls on, Veterans Day is always commemorated on November 11.
How to Celebrate Veterans Day?
Every year on November 11, we honor those who have served and continue to serve our country and show them our appreciation by saying, "thank you, veterans."
But there are many other ways to Celebrate this day. So, if you're looking for a proper way to recognize a veteran in your life, or if you want to donate in a meaningful way for veterans everywhere, here's a list of ideas to get you started.
1. Participate in Parades and Events
Show your respect to veterans by participating in parades and events arranged by the veteran community of your area. So cheer and clap for veterans and boost their enthusiasm.
2. Fly a Flag Following Proper Flag Etiquette
Veterans Day is a wonderful occasion to fly the flag. Just be sure to follow the correct display guidelines. Here are some of those crucial pointers:
- Never let a US flag contact the ground or drag it across it.
- Keep the American flag in the middle when other flags surround it, and never fly it higher than any other flag.
- It should not be hung from a vehicle's hood, top, sides, or back.
- Never fly a flag that has been torn or frayed. Broken and torn flags should be disposed of respectfully, preferably by burning.
- Never wear, sleep, or drape with the flag.
3. Make a Donation to a Veteran-Focused Charity
Numerous amazing organizations provide support, services, and appreciation to our service troops. Check out these injured veteran charities that have impacted getting some ideas for veteran donations.
4. Visit a VA Hospital
If you want to spend the day with a veteran, learn about the procedures at the local VA hospital for volunteering or talking to patients. On November 11, several VA hospitals will have activities or a special lunch that you can help make. Helping out at a facility is a way to give back and say "thank you, veterans," even if you never interact with one.
5. Some More Ideas
- Ask veterans about their service, listen to their stories, and end your conversation by saying "Thank You." You can also write letters to veterans appreciating their sacrifice and hard work for the country.
- Always support veterans owned businesses.
- Wear a red poppy to express your support for veterans and active-duty military personnel.
- Schools can develop a Veterans Day lesson plan to educate students about veterans and their glorious history. Schools can also invite veterans to tell students what it's like to be in the military.
Interesting Facts About Veterans Day
- Veterans Day is spelled without an apostrophe rather than "Veterans Day," "Veterans' Day," or "Veteran's Day."
- Veterans Day and Memorial Day are NOT the same. Veterans Day is a time to recognize living veterans for their sacrifices while honoring all who have served the country in times of war or peace, whether alive or dead. Memorial Day is a time to honor those who lost their lives in service to the nation, especially those who died in war or from wounds received in battle.
- The holiday was formerly known as Armistice Day in observance of the conclusion of World War I. But when World War II and the Korean War broke out, and on June 1, 1954, Congress changed the commemoration by changing the word "armistice" to "veterans" so that the day would honor American veterans of all conflicts.
- Given that World War I was fought on a global scale. This day is also observed in other ally nations, each in their unique manner to honor their veterans on November 11. Australia and Canada both refer to November 11 as "Remembrance Day." The holiday is more like Memorial Day in the United States in Australia. The United Kingdom also observes "Remembrance Day," but on the Sunday closest to November 11.
- Veterans Day was observed on a Monday from 1971 to 1977 because of the "Uniform Holiday Bill," which changed the holiday's fixed date from November 11 to a Monday so that federal workers could enjoy a three-day weekend.
- During those six years (1971-1977), some Americans observed Veterans Day on the old date while others celebrated it on a new day, making the change confusing and unneeded. President Gerald R. Ford again moved Veterans Day to November 11, 1978.
- Every Veterans Day and Memorial Day, a memorial service is held at Arlington National Cemetery.
- The Department of Veterans Affairs reported that in 2020, 325,574 of the 16 million Americans who had served in World War II were still living.
- In 2017, Alaska, Virginia, and the District of Columbia had the greatest proportions of female veterans.
- Alaska, Maine, and Montana had the greatest percentages of veterans in 2017.
- According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, there would be "approximately 12 million veterans by 2045, a nearly 40% decline from  estimates."
- The percentage of female veterans is predicted to double to 18% by 2045.
Veterans Day Quotes
"It takes a hero to be one of those men who goes into battle." — General Norman Schwarzkopf
"This will remain the land of the free so long as it is the home of the brave." — Elmer Davis, American journalist
"Without heroes, we are all plain people, and don't know how far we can go." — Bernard Malamud, American novelist
"Duty, honor, country: Those three hallowed words reverently dictate what you ought to be, what you can be, what you will be." — Douglas MacArthur
"Some people live an entire lifetime and wonder if they have ever made a difference in the world, but the Marines don't have that problem."— Ronald Reagan
"This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave." — Elmer Davis
1. Can I say "Happy Veterans Day"?
While there are more unique ways to thank people who have served in the military, wishing them a happy Veterans Day is more than acceptable.
2. What colors stand for Veterans Day?
Veterans Day does not have a designated color. However, many individuals wear yellow or red, white, and blue. The public typically associates these colors with the American military forces.
3. Why is Veterans Day celebrated on November 11?
When the Armistice with Germany went into force on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, major hostilities in World War I were effectively terminated. That's why Armistice Day, later named Veterans Day in 1954, is observed on November 11.
Veterans Day Observances
|2022||Fri||11 Nov||Veterans Day||Public|
|2023||Sat||11 Nov||Veterans Day||Public|
|2024||Mon||11 Nov||Veterans Day||Public|
|2025||Tue||11 Nov||Veterans Day||Public|
|2026||Wed||11 Nov||Veterans Day||Public|
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