Thank You, Veterans!
General George S. Patton once stated, “It is foolish and wrong to mourn the men who died. Rather we should thank God that such men lived.” Taking a leaf from General Patton, Americans annually celebrate our veterans on November 11, a tradition that began on November 11, 1919. Exactly one year following the conclusion of World War I, Armistice Day arose to commemorate the brave men and women who selflessly sacrificed to secure global peace and prosperity. The holiday received a name change in 1954 when President Eisenhower declared the eleventh day of November Veterans Day, an alteration that indicated a generalized sense of gratitude towards veterans from all wars, both the fallen and the living. Today, the American tradition of honoring our heroes entails a variety of activities, ceremonies, and gatherings. Perhaps the most prominent of these events is the laying of a wreath on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, a solemn act typically carried out by the president. Although many of us will not be able to witness this cherished custom in person on Veterans Day, a plethora of opportunities remain to express our gratitude to the men and women who have served. Attend a local Veterans Day ceremony, share the stories of family and friends who donned a uniform, or simply take the time to thank a veteran. Heroes who are willing to lay down their lives in hope of a brighter tomorrow, veterans are a treasured pillar of our nation that should never be forgotten.