Veterans Day: Honor those who served (with resources and more)

Womens war memorial Washington DC

WHO ARE OUR VETERANS? This close-up photo from the Vietnam Women’s Memorial in Washington DC reminds us that an ever-growing portion of our 22 million American veterans are women. The population of veterans also is becoming more racially and ethnically diverse. CLICK ON THIS PHOTO to read a 5-part OurValues series by sociologist Dr. Wayne Baker exploring American veterans’ lives.

TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 11: Salute the brave men and women whose sacrifices have kept America free and fighting for justice, on the anniversary of Armistice Day—better known nationally as Veterans Day.

Around the world, November 11 is remembered as the day an armistice—a temporary cessation of hostilities—went into effect between the Allied nations and Germany, unofficially ending World War I, in 1918. Europe, Britain and the Commonwealth countries commonly observe two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. each November 11; Canada pays tribute with Remembrance Day; the United States marks Veterans Day; and Britain keeps the second Sunday of November, with Remembrance Sunday.

Each year on Veterans Day, Americans rally behind their veterans, showing thanks with processions, ceremonies, television specials and words of gratitude. In the United States, the Veterans Day National Ceremony is held at Arlington National Cemetery each year, and several communities hold parades and other activities to honor their local veterans on November 11. Several restaurants and businesses in the U.S. offer free or discounted meals and products to veterans on Veterans Day. (Find a list of restaurants and stores offering discounts, here.)

Care to read more?

END OF ‘WAR TO END ALL WARS’

Following the armistice that halted World War I (“the war to end all wars’”) in 1918, it took just one year for President Woodrow Wilson to declare the first Armistice Day. Proclaimed in November of 1919, Armistice Day was soon elevated to a legal holiday. By 1954, following World War II and the Korean conflict, the word “Armistice” was replaced with “Veterans,” to honor more than just the veterans of World War I. (Learn more from Wikipedia and History.com.)

Today, Veterans Day honors all veterans, and is observed as a federal holiday on November 11.

RESOURCES
FOR TEACHERS, FAITH GROUPS

RESOURCES: Teachers can incorporate lessons related to Veterans Day with help from the 2014 Teachers Guide, available from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Students can also learn about Take a Vet to School Day, Veterans Day history and more.

TV SPECIAL This Veterans Day, Scripps Networks Interactive will be showcasing “A Hero’s Welcome,” the first program scheduled to appear on all of the media giant’s channels: the Cooking Channel, DIY Network, Food Network, Great American Country, HGTV and the Travel Channel. (Watch the trailer here.) The 60-minute special will feature veterans and, of course, Scripps Networks celebrities. (The New York Times reported.) The special will run once on each channel between 9 p.m. ET and 11 p.m. ET on November 11.

FOR FAITH GROUPS: The Department of Veterans Affairs recognizes that faith groups can be fundamental in easing the burdens and injuries experienced by many veterans. The VA shares resources with faith groups. Learn more about President Obama’s Office for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, and reach out to the veterans in your community.

HEADSTONES: Interested in which religious/belief emblems are available for government headstones and markers? Check out the list, here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Tell Us What You Think