As we go about our busy day, it’s sometimes difficult to take a few moments and be thankful and grateful for some of the personal freedoms that we take for granted. There’s no denying that we enjoy the lives we were able to because of the sacrifices made by the brave men and women of our armed services. Their willingness to answer the call and defend our way of life is something we should always be grateful for, no matter what time of year or day it is. It’s easy to get swept up in the day-to-day hustle and bustle, which is why every November 11th, we recognize the gallantry and sacrifice of our veterans on Veterans Day.
The holiday became an annual tradition in 1919 when then-president Woodrow Wilson wanted to commemorate the ending of the First World War. Wilson was quoted as saying: “Out of this victory, there arose new possibilities of political freedom and economic concert. The war showed us the strength of great nations acting together for high purposes, and the victory of arms foretells the enduring conquests which can be made in peace when nations act justly and in furtherance of the common interests of men.” As global normalcy slowly began to return following the conclusion of the Second World War in 1945, it was decided that Veteran’s Day would take on a broader meaning, acknowledging all American veterans who had served and not just those who had died during the First World War.
The importance of Veteran’s Day cannot be overstated. This is a day where we recognize and acknowledge outstanding individuals who did their duty with selflessness, honor, and bravery. And because most schools and workplaces are closed, it’s the perfect chance to give back to those who did so without asking for anything in return. If you live in the vicinity of a memorial or veteran’s hospital, consider volunteering or paying an important visit. Take some time out of your busy day to listen to the experiences of a veteran you know; there’s a chance you’ll gain a new appreciation for this particular holiday and those who it honors. And always remember, saying “thank you” might not cost anything, but it’s a priceless action on your part.
If you’re looking to make a significant contribution to the veterans who live in the Sarasota area, it’s the perfect time of year to do so. SRQ Vets is a non-profit organization run by and for the veterans in our local community. To find out more about us and how you can help, visit us online at https://www.srqvets.us.