Veteran's Day

by - Saturday, November 10, 2018

Veteran's Day, originally Armistice Day, is one year away from being observed for a century. It began on the 11th of November, 1919, on the first anniversary of the end of the Great War, now commonly referred to as World War 1. The U.S Congress, in 1926, made this a day to be observed annually, and, in 1938, it became a national holiday. This day is unique because it recognises both living and dead veterans, and it gives special honour and respect to those who are alive and have served their country. 

Great Britain, France, Canada, & Australia also honour WW1 & 2 veterans around November 11th. Britain observes Rememberance Sunday while Canada has Rememberence Day. It is also common in Europe to observe two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. every November 11th. 

My maternal grandfather was one of the 2 million veterans who served during the Korean War before coming home to marry my grandma. My parents raised myself & my siblings to have the utmost respect for all who have served our country. Thanking veterans when you're out and about is one of the simplest ways to express your gratitude, and I would encourage you to do so. You never know how much you can encourage and uplift a former serviceman/woman with a simple "thank you for your service." 

I find it absolutely incredible that there are real men and women out there who are willing to lay down their lives for me, someone they don't know and will never meet. These courageous individuals have a love for God & country, family, friends & freedom. No matter the reason behind their choice to enter into the military, it is doubtless an admirable and selfless action that they carry out by serving and protecting all that America stands for. 

This is a day that spans across the sea. It began after one of the most devastating periods in modern history: World War 1. The Great War was a time of upheaval, social unrest, fear, and grief. Since then, the world has seen some of the worst monstrosities and gross acts of inhumanity. And in every one of these wars and battles, there have been men and women who have stood up, set their jaws, and walked straight towards death in order to defend the freedoms that were fought for so long ago. 

This day of remembrance is a solemn one. It is a beautiful way to show respect and to honour the veterans in your life or those that you encounter wherever you may be. I would encourage you to not see this weekend as just an extra day of relaxation and leisure. Take a moment out of your day to reflect on the sacrifices of our veterans. Many have a lost limbs, friends, mental stability, or their own lives in the defence of our nation. These heroes have done this for you, for your freedom.

May we always be a grateful people, lest we forget.

*photos from Unsplash

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