Veterans Day thoughtsToday (Nov. 11) it is what I grew up knowing as Armistice Day — that day in 1918 when our nation entered into a temporary peace agreement with Germany, until 1919 — when the Treaty of Versailles was signed by both sides following the end of World War I.
By: Buzz Marzolf, Hudson, Hudson Star-Observer
Today it is what I grew up knowing as Armistice Day — that day in 1918 when our nation entered into a temporary peace agreement with Germany, until 1919 — when the Treaty of Versailles was signed by both sides following the end of World War I. A bit of interim history: On June 1, 1954, President Eisenhower signed legislation which changed the name of this legal holiday from Armistice Day to Veterans Day. For about 20 years, Veterans Day was celebrated on November 11, the date of the armistice mentioned above.
In 1968, however, Congress passed legislation which established the fourth Monday in October as the date for observing Veterans Day, a law designated to take effect in 1971. In 1975, however, legislation was passed returning the federal observance of Veterans Day to November 11th. That law went into effect in 1978, and ever since we have honored our veterans on this date.
Earlier today (Nov. 11) I had the privilege of being present at this year’s tribute to our veterans; it took place in front of the Veterans Memorial, near the main entrance to the St. Croix County Government Center. The ceremony was as humbling as it was meaningful.
I would like to extend sincere gratitude to members of the Hudson VFW Memorial Post 2115, the American Legion Post 50-VVA Chapter and the Indianhead POW-MIA Chapter for having sponsored this inspiring event.
Sincere acknowledgements also to Hudson Mayor Dean Knudson for your thoughtful words of gratitude; to the Hudson High School Concert Band, directed by Ryan McCarthy, for your beautifully played patriotic anthems; and to the fifth grade students at Hudson Prairie Elementary School —along with their conductor, Amy Gallick, and their teachers — not only for your wonderful, on-key voices as you sang Freedom’s Light, but for the 40 or so carefully crafted posters which adorned the walls of the Government Center Community Room following the outdoor ceremony.
Each poster contained a key word, inscribed within a white star, on a red, white and blue background. The key words — many of which were in the form of descriptive adjectives—were: bold, bravery, courage, dedicated, devoted, generosity, graceful, heroic, honor, loyalty, patriotic, responsible, risk-taker, willing.
One student’s poster used the key word “Courageous;” s(he) then wrote “You were courageous to volunteer to go into war.” “You risked your lives to save our country.” “You left your families, knowing you may never see them again.”
Young people, you are our future; you are our hope! Thank you sincerely.
Most of all, Veterans, it is with sincere gratitude that we attempt to say thank you; words fail as we try to express our appreciation to each of you for your selfless service to our nation and to our families.