WARD SENDS: Veterans Day 2009
Americans celebrated Armistice Day on November 11, 1919, commemorating the first anniversary of the end of World War 1 by honoring the nation’s fallen warriors and calling for a lasting peace. Soon veterans became part of the annual event, and in 1938 Congress declared Armistice Day a legal holiday. On June 1, 1954, the name was changed to Veterans Day to honor all U.S. veterans.
Veterans now number more than 20 million in the United States. Our veterans, past and present, deserve our recognition on this special day.
In this we also remember our newest generation of American veterans and their families.
I salute all our veterans for their important roles in protecting our national security and the security of our allies and friends around the world. It is because of these great men and women that we enjoy the freedom that we have today.
Thank you, veterans, for your patriotism and service to our Nation.
General William "Kip" Ward