According to the US Department of Veteran Affairs, approximately 19 million veterans are in the United States. In 2021, only about 240,000 of the 16 million Americans who served during World War II were still alive.
Staying true and serving your country during a war isn’t an easy thing! Remember, it’s your life you’re putting on the line for others! Such an act of selflessness deserves a heroic honor. This is where Veterans Day comes into play.
Veterans Day is observed yearly since November 11, 1919, to honor all Americans who served in either World War I or II. It’s a great moment to celebrate with your loved ones as you commemorate US veterans, their sacrifice, and service to the country.
If you’re looking to learn more about Veteran day, we got you. That’s why we’ve put together this guide. So, let’s get to it!
What is Veterans Day?
First things first! What’s Veterans Day? Veterans Day is a special day on the US calendar, observed yearly on November 11 in the United States. It’s a designated holiday for honoring and celebrating all Americans who served in World War I, II, and the Korean war.
Veterans Day celebration’s date selection isn’t by chance. This date was chosen to commemorate the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” in 1918. This date marked the end of World War I and is popularly known as Armistice Day.
The day is observed on Monday if it falls on a Sunday and Friday if it falls on a Saturday. All Federal, State, and Local government offices and operations remain closed to observe the day. On the other hand, private entities can open or remain closed as they deem fit.
More importantly, 11 November marks the beginning of the “National Veterans Awareness Week,” which runs through 17 November. This is per the United States Senate Resolution 143, passed on Aug. 4, 2001.
The “National Veterans Awareness Week” is designated for educating elementary and High School students about the US veterans.
Veterans Day Vs. Memorial Day: What’s the Difference?
While Memorial Day is primarily for honoring deceased service members, Veterans Day is designated for honoring both living and dead veterans. But, it’s primarily for celebrating and appreciating the living veterans.
Facts You Didn’t Know about Veterans Day
- Veterans Day was formerly known as Armistice Day to commemorate the end of World War I on November 11, 1918.
- The name was changed to Veterans Day in 1954 after the end of World War II and the Korean War to honor and celebrate veterans of all wars.
- Veterans Day was moved to the fourth Monday of October 1968 under the Uniforms Holiday Bill. This was in a bid to celebrate four national holidays on Mondays. The four holidays were;
- Washington’s Birthday
- Memorial Day
- Veterans Day
- Columbus Day
- Under the new law, the first Veterans Day was observed with much confusion on Oct. 25, 1971.
- President Gerald R. Ford signed a law on September 20, 1975, restoring Veterans Day’s original date of Nov. 11, starting in 1978.
- The lack of an apostrophe in Veterans is deliberate and not a grammatical error. The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs argues the day doesn’t belong to veterans. Instead, it’s meant to honor living and deceased veterans.
- Other countries, like Canada, France, Australia, and Great Britain, also observe Veterans Day in their way.
Veterans Day is a special day on the US calendar. It’s designated for celebrating and honoring all Americans who served in the World wars and the Korean war. They deserve a heroic honor after their selfless acts and service to their country.