Magazine article VFW Magazine

Veterans Day

Magazine article VFW Magazine

Veterans Day

Article excerpt

Remembering America's forgotten warriors is fast becoming a thing of the past. It's about time Nov. 11 is paid its proper respect.

Veterans Day, once a widely celebrated holiday, is increasingly forgotten by many Americans. One need only look at the poor turnouts at ceremonies on Nov. 11. With the percentage of citizens who wore a uniform rapidly declining, appreciation for the sacrifices made by veterans is correspondingly diminishing.

To help counter this trend, the VFW has long promoted Veterans Day as an opportunity to educate the general public as to the meaning of this unique time each November. This task can best be accomplished by explaining the five "Ws."

Who. As a nation, we remember all Americans who served on active duty in the armed forces. While those who died always remain prominent in our memories, they have a special time of mourning reserved for Memorial Day. Veterans Day is an opportunity to publicly commemorate the contributions of living veterans.

What. Collective as well as individual contributions to the nation's defense is what we are remembering. The outcome of any given military campaign is irrelevant here-it's the sacrifices made at the behest of the country that are important.

Where. Across the land, virtually every state capital ground and county courthouse lawn hosts monuments, memorials and plaques honoring those who served. They date back as far as the Revolution and are as recent as Kosovo. But paying homage to veterans need not necessarily be in a public place. …

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