Veterans Day Tribute

by Rich Weatherly

 

It’s hard to believe that Veterans Day 2012 has arrived once again. Traditionally, it is observed on the 11th hour, of the 11th day of the 11th Month in honor of Armistice Day which commemorated the end of World War I. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed the first Armistice Day in 1918:

 

“To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations.”

 

In Australia, Britain, Canada, and South African it is celebrated as Remembrance Day. It is so honored by other members of the Allied Powers in Europe and around the world.

 

I am old enough to have known veterans of WWI, WWII, the Korean War (officially called a conflict), Vietnam War, and every war since. There are far too many engagements to mention that qualify former service personnel for the Expeditionary Medal which is the standard for recognition as a war veteran.

 

We celebrate Veterans Day to honor those who served to defend our freedoms. Former President Eisenhower may have said it best.

 

“I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its stupidity.”

 

DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, speech, Jan. 10, 1946

Dwight D. Eisenhower photo portrait.

Dwight D. Eisenhower photo portrait. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Those of us who have served did so out of a sense of duty and honor. In my lifetime I have celebrated Veterans Day with my maternal grandfather a WWI Army Air-corps vet, my dad a Pearl Harbor Attack survivor, uncles who served in Army during WWII, cousins who served in Korea, a multitude of Vietnam survivors and nephews and children of friends who have served in the wars since Vietnam. Let us all take a moment this weekend to reflect on those we have lost, thank those who have served and show them the honor they deserve.
Check with local event schedules this year. While Veterans Day happens this Sunday, November 11th, it is being observed in my community on Nov 9. It will be recognized as a national holiday on November 12th, 2012.

My heart goes out to those who have lost friends and loved ones while serving this great nation and to those representing our Allies.

English: Eisenhower signing of HR7786, June 1,...

English: Eisenhower signing of HR7786, June 1, 1954, this ceremony changed Armistice Day to Veterans Day. Alvin J. King, Wayne Richards, Arthur J. Connell, John T. Nation, Edward Rees, Richard L. Trombla, Howard W. Watts. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

21 Comments

Filed under Veterans Day

21 responses to “Veterans Day Tribute

  1. Thanks Rich for your wonderful post to Veterans. Thank you also for sharing about your relationship to several Veterans.

    I do believe I recognize the location of the Veteran Memorial Park. It is in my old stomping grounds.

  2. However repellent and distasteful the act of war, there are times when it is necessary to defend what freedoms we have. These celebrations do not glorify war, but mark the courage of those willing to make the ultimate sacrifice.

    You can be proud of your family heritage, Rich.

  3. A lovely tribute to those whose devotion to freedom can never be repaid, and a reminder to anyone who may take their freedom for granted, to thank a veteran.

    • So well said, Sandy.
      As I respond to your heartfelt comment and insightful expression of gratitude, I’ve just returned from our local celebration. These Veterans Day Celebrations have become an annual tradition that I look forward.
      Thank you again for your comment! :-)

  4. Hi Rich!

    Thank you for this lovely tribute & for your service to our country. This quote hit home for me: “I hate war as only a soldier who has lived it can, only as one who has seen its brutality, its stupidity.” I’ve never been in a war but I’ve seen some of the aftereffects. Veterans deserve our gratitude & support.

    *hugs* for you!

    • Hi Shelli!
      What a wonderful compliment coming from someone who has taken such an active interest in the impact of war on Veterans. I know this topic is near and dear to your heart. I continue to wait with high expectations for your second book. No pressure, LOL :-)
      Those who don’t know and understand war are often quick to downplay or disregard the contributions of those who served.
      Thank you again for expressing your gratitude and support.

      *hugs back* for you my friend!

  5. It is so unusual that it is on a Sunday this year! I guess it has to happen once in a while!
    We really do owe them so much as they sacrificed everything for us!
    Great Post Rich!

  6. It is, Susie. As a result it is being celebrated from today through Monday. Maybe that is a good thing. We do owe our very existence who served to protect our liberty and freedoms. Likewise, we should honor returning Vets suffering physical disabilities, PTSD and other issues. Thank you! :)

  7. Thank you for this post! Love supporting our troops!

  8. Appreciate your wonderful Veteran’s Day Tribute, Rich. Thanks for sharing some history and your service career and experiences.
    There are those closer to me and others that I didn’t have the good fortune to know. In my family I can remember uniforms of the day for my dad and his second wife who met and married on a hospital ship in the Navy, my brother and his wife who met and married in Hawaii in the Navy, my husband in the army his father a career Army Officer, my uncle, nephew, and cousins in the Army, Navy, and Marines. Also my mom was a Riveter at the aircraft factory in New Orleans so I count her in the service of our country. Some close friends, now, are Veterans and others have children who are Veterans.

    ~Charlotte

    • Thank you, Charlotte.
      The best thing about holidays such as Veterans Day is the memories they rekindle. What better time to remember those who served in so many different ways. We owe our thanks to all the ‘Rosie the Riveters’out there.
      I want to make a comment about a branch of service that may not receive as much recognition as it should, the USS Coast Guard. When the Navy setup Operation Market Time in South Vietnam, the Coast Guard provided most of the men and vessels for river patrols. During peacetime, they continue to interdict smugglers, drug trafficars and are the primary sea rescue organization.
      Thanks again for your tribute to those you knew and know!
      ~Rich

  9. Thanks for a great post Rich. To all of the brothers in arms I salute you. Its the Marine Corps Birthday also Semper Fi. ALL of my family have served in every war since before the Euros came to stay and I can’t say enough for the men and women who serve us now.

    • Thanks Michael. I can’t top your tribute! Semper Fi and thank you for your service my friend :-)
      Freedom isn’t free, it has been bought at a priced redeemed by the blood of those who fought and gave their lives.
      We need to honor all who have gone before and as you say, and extend that honor to those who continue to serve.

  10. Pingback: This Saturday…Bestowed « whitehothair

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