Our View: Once a year not enough to honor our nation’s veterans

November 11, 2018

Today, Americans celebrate Veterans Day. It is a special occasion, set aside to honor and thank those who serve the nation in all branches of the armed forces.

Originally called Armistice Day, the first celebration was on Nov. 11, 1919, commemorating the one-year anniversary of the end of World War I.

Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance and Nov. 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1954 to change the name to Veterans Day as a way to honor those who served in all American wars.

In addition to honoring living veterans, a national ceremony takes place at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia.

According to U.S. Census Bureau statistics, there were 18.2 million military veterans in the United States in 2017. The number of veterans aged 65 and older in 2017 was 9.6 million. There were 1.6 million female veterans last year.

Lake Havasu City takes special care to honor and support its veterans. There are services provided for veterans, including veterans treatment court for veterans who find themselves in the justice system, and travel assistance for vets who have to seek medical assistance through Veterans Affairs facilities in Prescott and beyond. We’re home to numerous organizations, such as the Disabled American Vets, the Marine Corps League, American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Lake Havasu City will pay homage to local veterans today beginning with a parade at 10 a.m. The parade begins at the corner of Acoma and McCulloch boulevards, heads down Main Street and ends at Wheeler Park, where there will be a ceremony featuring local veterans and officials.

Once a year is not enough to say thanks to those that have served and are serving today. It is because of those who serve Americans enjoy the freedom to celebrate publicly, to have parades and openly express gratitude.

Thank you all for all you have done in the past and are doing now to preserve that freedom.

— Today’s News-Herald

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