Celebrating Veterans Day

In recognition of Veteran’s day coming up on Friday, let us talk a little about the history behind this national holiday. The first celebration of Veterans Day took place in Birmingham, Alabama in 1947. A World War II veteran, Raymond Weeks, organized a day full of parades and festivals on November 11 to honor all veterans. Before this holiday was considered “National Veterans Day” it was “Armistice Day.” This day was dedicated to the cause of world peace. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed the legislation on June 1,1954 and, from then on, Nov. 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars. The development of Veterans Day did not stop there though. In 1968, when Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which ensured three-day weekends for federal employees and encouraged tourism and travel, by celebrating four national holidays, one of those four being Veterans Day. From now on, if Nov.11 falls on a Saturday or Sunday the federal government observes the holiday on the previous Friday or following Monday to allow that three-day weekend.
Over the years, the United States has celebrated this day by having an official wreath-laying ceremony held at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in Arlington National Cemetery, while parades and other types of celebrations are held in states around the country. The United States isn’t the only place in the world that commemorates the veterans. Canada has Remembrance Day, Britain has Remembrance Sunday and In Europe, Great Britain and Commonwealth countries it is common to observe two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. every Nov. 11.
On this year’s Veterans Day you can participate by thanking any and all veterans you know for their time, bravery and sacrifice for this country or commemorating those who have lost their lives by thinking of them on your day off.