Veterans Day pays tribute to all American veterans, living or deceased, and honors the living veterans who serve our country honorably during war and peacetime.
This week Wednesday, November 11th, is Veterans Day. Veterans Day originated as “Armistice Day” on November 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance. November 11th became a national holiday beginning in 1938. Unlike Memorial Day that honors those who lost their lives in service to our country, Veterans Day pays tribute to all American veterans, living or deceased. Veterans Day particularly honors the living veterans who serve our country honorably during war and peacetime.
In 1954, President Eisenhower officially changed the name of the holiday from Armistice Day to Veterans Day reflecting the desire to honor all veterans of foreign conflict rather than only those who had died.
The unofficial flower of Veterans Day is the poppy. This first became the symbol to remember fallen soldiers after John McCrae wrote a poem called “In Flanders Field.” He wrote about how millions of poppy flowers grew in the Flanders Field, where fallen troops had been buried. After this poem was published, veterans groups began to adopt the poppy as a sign of remembrance and respect for those who died. Today, the flower has come to be a symbol of reverence for any person who served in the armed forces during any war.
As we honor our veterans this week, let also continue to pray for peace so that other lives and families may be spared the anguish that comes with the loss of life. We thank all those who have served our country to protect the freedoms that we have come to enjoy and pray for all who serve in the military that they may be safe and reunited with their families soon.