Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans Day: A Brief History

Originally called Armistice Day, it was proclaimed by Woodrow Wilson to celebrate the first anniversary of the Armistice that was signed to end World War I.

We've all heard the phrase... the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when Germany signed the Armistice, ending The Great War.

It was made a legal holiday in 1938.

Several years later, in 1953, a shopkeeper from Kansas, named Al King had the idea to honor all American veterans on Armistice day and not just those from World War I. King had been very active in supporting all veterans, with the group American War Dads. A congressman from his home town, liked the idea and pushed the idea through Congress. And in 1954, President Eisenhower signed it into law, making the 11th of November officially Veterans Day. A day to honor all veterans of every war.

If there are any veterans you'd like to salute and honor, here is your forum. Please comment below and honor our soldiers.

I'll honor my Grandfather, Joe Vetter, who served in the Army during World War II as an Ordinance Supply Technician. We're fortunate he didn't see any combat action, but he did share a boat with General Patton and was given clean-up duty on Omaha Beach several days after D-Day, in the European theater. I know he's spending today calling all of his army buddies. Unfortunately, each year he makes fewer and fewer phone calls.

He's written a few heartfelt entries on this blog. Here is his take on D-Day, and here are his thoughts on the GI Bill.

Grandpop, I love you and salute you. Thank you.

And finally, for more stories go to http://www.americanprofile.com/veterans/, a site dedicated to telling the stories of real American heroes.

In honor of Veteran's Day, ShopPBS is offering 15% off War & Military Titles PLUS Buy More Save More starts today.


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Rebecca said...

I'd like to honor both my grandfathers. One of them served in World War II and saw action on Okinawa. My other grandpa served in Korea and was awarded a purple heart. Neither of them are still alive today but I'm honored that they served their country!

klkatz said...

Thanks Rebecca.

Do you have any stories to share about your grandfathers? And if so, why don't you share them on your blog and let us know.

Rebecca said...

I'm planning to do a post about them someday and talk about their military service! I feel like it's always good to honor my relatives who have served.

Soldiers Mail said...

Readers might enjoy also reading Soldier's Mail which features the writings home of US Sgt. Sam Avery while on the front lines of American involvement in the Great War from the hot sands of the Rio Grande to the cold mud along the Meuse.

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