Gary B. takes a look at the history of Veterans Day

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Come Monday is a celebration of Veterans Day in America — a day that is also celebrated in other countries as well. (Veterans Day is officially on Sunday, Nov. 11, but it will be observed in the U.S. on Monday, Nov. 12.)

There is also a misconception or two about this well-known American holiday. Some associate Veterans Day with Memorial Day. Memorial Day is a time to remember those who gave their lives in defense of our country, particularly in battle or from wounds they suffered in battle.

Veterans Day honors our service personnel who served the country in war and peace, whether dead or alive. The day is also largely intended to give thanks to living veterans for their sacrifices.

Veteran’s Day was first known as Armistice Day, commemorating the end of World War I. Officially that war ended in June of 1919. Actually, the war ended about 7 months prior to that when the Allies and Germany put into effect an armistice in the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month. So, Nov. 11 of 1918 was dubbed Armistice Day.

With some official changes in between, it was not until 1968 that the Uniform Holiday Bill was passed by Congress to ensure that a few federal holidays would be celebrated on a Monday.

Australia and Canada celebrate the day as Remembrance Day. In Great Britain, it goes by the same name, but is observed on the Sunday closest to Nov. 11. The Brits hold parades, services, and a two-minute period of silence in London to honor those who lost their lives in war.

As America observes Veterans Day, we at White River Now and WRD Entertainment say “Thank you to our veterans for what you have done in your service for America and its people. We will be forever grateful!” And because of your sacrifices, we can take to heart what Williams Gladstone said when he remarked, “We look forward to the time when the power to love will replace the love of power. Then will our world know the blessing of peace.”

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