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Honoring veterans throughout the year

November is the time most people officially recognize the service and sacrifice of military veterans. However, veterans deserve to be recognized and honored throughout the year.

November 11 is Veterans Day, of course. The holiday actually began as Armistice Day, a celebration of the end of World War I. The US Department of Defense explains:

World War I officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919. However, the fighting ended about seven months before that when the Allies and Germany put into effect an armistice on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.

 

For that reason, Nov. 11, 1918, was largely considered the end of “the war to end all wars” and dubbed Armistice Day. In 1926, Congress officially recognized it as the end of the war, and in 1938, it became an official holiday, primarily a day set aside to honor veterans of World War I.

 

But then World War II and the Korean War happened, so on June 1, 1954, at the urging of veterans service organizations, Congress amended the commemoration yet again by changing the word “armistice” to “veterans” so the day would honor American veterans of all wars.

There is another holiday that honors veterans during the year. While Veterans Day is intended to honor all who have served the country in war or peace, whether dead or still living, Memorial Day is a day to remember those who gave their lives in battle, in service to their country.

Veterans deserve honor and support throughout the year. Those who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), in particular, need help and encouragement as they work through their challenges. Veterans of all types, from all branches of the military, served and sacrificed for their country. They deserve nothing less than recognition and respect every day of the year.

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