History of Veterans Day & Ways Thank Veterans
Veterans Day, Armistice Day, and Remembrance Day all represent a holiday that is observed around the world. Why is this day so significant? Let’s take some time to learn more about the Veterans Day holiday and how we can best show our appreciation and love to those who have served their country.
Facts about Veterans Day, Armistice Day, & Remembrance Day
Check out these Veterans Day facts and learn more about Armistice Day and Remembrance Day!
- What is Veterans Day? Veterans Day is a public holiday in the US that recognizes men and women who have served in the Armed Forces.
- When is Veterans Day? Veterans Day is on November 11. It commemorates the day World War I ended, at 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month, in 1918.
- Veterans Day Meaning. Veterans Day not only marks a day of historical significance, but it represents an opportunity to honor and thank veterans for their patriotism and willingness to serve their country.
- Armistice Day. Veterans Day was originally known as Armistice Day because it marked the anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended World War I. US President Wilson proclaimed the first Armistice Day in 1919, but after World War II and the Korean War, President Eisenhower changed the name to Veterans Day in order to honor American veterans of all wars.
- Remembrance Day. While the US changed Armistice Day to Veterans Day, other countries changed the holiday name to Remembrance Day. Remembrance Day is observed in different ways around the world, but many countries mark the day with military parades, laying wreaths at memorials, and a moment of silence.
- Remembrance Day Poppy. Why do we see so many red flowers on Remembrance Day? These flowers, known as poppies, were common on the Western Front battlefields. Despite a muddy and barren landscape from fighting and bombing, these delicate flowers flourished. Lieutenant-Colonel John McCrae, a Canadian doctor, was inspired by the thriving flowers and wrote a poem in 1915 called “In Flanders Fields.” McCrae’s poem inspired others to campaign for the poppy to become a symbol of remembrance. Today, people around the world wear an artificial poppy on Remembrance Day; Americans, however, typically wear poppies on Memorial Day, not Veterans Day.
- Memorial Day vs. Veterans Day. How do Memorial Day and Veterans Day differ? Memorial Day, a US holiday that falls on the last Monday in May, honors those who have died while serving in the military; Veterans Day honors all who have served in the Armed Forces.
Ideas to Thank Veterans
Here are a few ways you can thank or honor a veteran this Veterans Day holiday!
- Digital Greeting Cards. Recognize and thank a veteran with patriotic Veterans Day ecards you can customize with your own personal message. Upload a photo and include a short video expressing your gratitude, then easily email or text ecards right from your phone.
- Group Video. Another thoughtful way to honor a veteran is through a group video where friends and family can share their gratitude. Simply ask loved ones to let the recipient know how much their service is appreciated and easily create a heartfelt group video you can share through email, text, and social media. The recipient will be grateful to see familiar faces and hear messages of love from so many people!
- Give. There are several nonprofits that support military families and veterans that would appreciate a financial donation. Strapped for cash? Donate your time to a local organization that supports veterans or volunteer remotely! Home for the Warriors is one veterans organization that offers remote volunteer opportunities.
- Attend Events. If there are military parades, memorial events, or other veteran ceremonies in your community, be sure to take part. These events are wonderful opportunities to show your support and learn more about our veterans.
- Listen. Ask a loved one if they’d be comfortable sharing what their experience was like in the service. Some might not want to share any of their stories, but others would love the opportunity to talk about their experience. Regardless of your loved one’s response, be sure to be a good listener and supportive friend.
We hope you found our Veterans Day guide helpful and found a meaningful way to thank a veteran for their service this Veterans Day holiday!