A Tribute to Our Veterans


The History of Veterans Day

World War I, known at the time as “The Great War,” began on 28 June 1914 and lasted until the armistice between the Allied Powers and the Central Powers went into effect on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918. So though the war officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on 28 June 1919, most consider 11 November 1918 as the end of “the war to end all wars.”

The following year, US President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed 11 November as the first commemoration of Armistice day with the words, “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations…” The original observance consisted of parades and public gatherings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 1100 on 11 November.[1] 

Legislatures of twenty-seven states declared 11 November to be a legal holiday before the US Congress officially recognized the day with a Resolution on 4 June 1926. The Senate wrote, with the House of Representatives concurring, that “the President of the United States is requested to issue a proclamation calling upon the officials to display the flag of the United States on all Government buildings on November 11 and inviting the people of the United States to observe the day in schools and churches, or other suitable places, with appropriate ceremonies of friendly relations with all other peoples.”

Congress then approved an Act on 13 May 1938, to make the 11 November of each year a legal holiday -- a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as “Armistice Day.” Though originally established to honor veterans of World War I, after World War II and the Korean War at the urging of the veteran service organizations the 83rd Congress amended the Act of 1938 to strike the word “Armistice” and insert “Veterans” in its place. The bill became law when President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it on 26 May 1954. Congress then followed up with an Act (HR7786), which President Eisenhower signed on 1 June 1954, thus officially changing the name of the legal holiday on 11 November to Veterans Day -- a day to honor all American veterans.[2]

The United States Armed Forces

The United States Army (USA) is the land service branch of the United States Armed Forces. The modern US Army has its roots in the Continental Army, which was formed on 14 June 1775 to fight the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783). After the Revolutionary War, the Congress of the Confederation created the United States Army on 3 June 1784 to replace the disbanded Continental Army. The US Army considers itself descended from the Continental Army, and considers its institutional inception to be the origin of that armed force in 1775.[3]

The United States Navy (USN) is the maritime service branch of the United States Armed Forces. The US Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy, which was established on 13 October 1775 during the American Revolutionary War. After the Revolutionary War, the US Congress passed the Naval Act of 1794 for the construction of six heavy frigates, the first ships of the US Navy.[4]

The United States Marine Corps (USMC), also referred to as the United States Marines, is the maritime land force service branch of the United States Armed Forces responsible for conducting expeditionary and amphibious operations. The history of the Marine Corps began when two battalions of Continental Marines were formed on 10 November 1775 in Philadelphia as a service branch of infantry troops capable of fighting both at sea and on shore during the Revolutionary War. The Marine Corps has been part of the US Department of the Navy since 30 June 1834.[5] 

The United States Coast Guard (USCG) is the maritime security, search and rescue, and law enforcement service branch of the United States Armed Forces. The Coast Guard is a maritime, military, multi-mission service unique among the US military branches for having a maritime law enforcement mission with jurisdiction in both domestic and international waters and a federal regulatory agency mission as part of its duties. It operates under the US Department of Homeland Security during peacetime and can be transferred to the Department of the Navy under the Department of Defense by the President at any time, or by the Congress during times of war.[6]

The United States Air Force (USAF) is the air service branch of the United States Armed Forces. Initially formed as a part of the United States Army on 1 August 1907, the USAF was established as a separate branch of the US Armed Forces on 18 September 1947 with the passing of the National Security Act of 1947.[7]

The United States Space Force (USSF) is the space service branch of the US Armed Forces. Initially formed as Air Force Space Command on 1 September 1982, the Space Force was established as an independent military branch on 20 December 2019, with the signing of the United States Space Force Act, part of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2020. The US Space Force is organized as a military service branch within the Department of the Air Force.[8] 

A Debt of Gratitude

We owe a debt of gratitude to all of our veterans -- a debt we can never fully repay. There are nearly 18 million Americans who are veterans of the US Armed Forces living today. It is our solemn duty as American citizens to ensure that our veterans -- many of whom sustained life-altering injuries and illnesses fighting for the cause of freedom -- receive the best possible care with the dignity that they deserve. We honor our veterans for their selfless service to protect our freedom and preserve liberty today and every day.  

Happy Veterans Day to all who are currently serving and all who have served in the US military! We appreciate you and thank you for your willingness to fight to defend our freedom. We do not take that for granted. May God bless you and your families and may God continue to bless America -- home of the free because of the brave!


This article is dedicated in memory of Lt. Colonel Christopher N. Quaid, USAF (retired), space operator and battlefield airman, a combat veteran of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF). Chris served our nation honorably for over twenty years and is a member of the US Space Force in spirit, which he predicted would happen but which was created after he joined heaven’s army.

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