The service members we honor today came from all walks of life, but they shared several fundamental qualities. They possessed courage, pride, determination, selflessness, dedication to duty and integrity – all the qualities needed to serve a cause larger than one’s self. Many of them didn’t ask to leave their homes to fight on distant battlefields. Many didn’t even volunteer. They didn’t go to war because they loved fighting. They were called to be part of something bigger than themselves.
Those men and women were ordinary people… until they heard the call of duty and answered it. They left their families … their homes … and their lives … not for recognition or fame or even the honor we bestow upon them today. They fought to protect our country … to maintain our way of life. They rose to the nation’s call because they wanted to protect a nation which has given them, us, so much.
Since the first shots at Lexington and Concord were fired and our Revolutionary War began, American men and women have been answering the nation’s call to duty.
Millions of Americans have fought and died on battlefields here and abroad to defend our freedoms and way of life. Today our troops continue to make the ultimate sacrifices, and even as we lose troops, more Americans step forward to say, I’m ready to serve. They follow in the footsteps of generations of fine Americans. Veteran’s day, originally called Armistice Day, was originally designated as a day to celebrate the end of World War I.
The first World War ended on the 11th hour…of the 11th day…of the 11th month… in 1918.
Due to the conclusion of “the War to end all Wars,” November 11th became a universally recognized day of celebration. the legislation that created Veteran’s Day was, and I quote, “dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be hereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day.”
The War on Terrorism has helped us all realize how truly unique the American way of life is. The freedom we enjoy is extremely special, and that is why we must defend it.
As time went on and we engaged in further conflicts during World War II and Korea, veterans’ groups lobbied for a change. Rather than honoring the armistice and only those who served in World War I, the holiday would now honor all veterans from every war and conflict the United States had encountered. We’ve honored our troops and their service and sacrifice ever since.
We have awarded medals to many Soldiers, added their names to monuments and named buildings for them, to honor them for their bravery. But nothing can ever replace the hole left behind by a fallen service member, and no number of medals and ribbons can comfort the ones left behind.
Today, people throughout the country will gather together to remember, to honor, and to pay gratitude to those who have served our country. However, the defense of freedom is not just for those in the military; each of us shares that duty and that responsibility. We don’t have to join the army or the navy or any other organization of defense to actively defend our way of life. We can protect our freedom simply by maintaining it here in America. If we want to preserve our freedoms, we must put them into action – for example, by voting in elections or speaking out against injustices. We must also ensure that everyone feels the benefits of freedom. And we can do that by volunteering in our communities or teaching our children what it really means to be an American. Our gathering is just one small spark in the flame of pride that burns across the nation today and every day. It’s not a lot, but its one small way we can honor those who have made the ultimate sacrifice so that we can live in freedom.
Your presence here today and that of the people gathering all across America is a tribute to those lost troops and to their Families. It is a way to say we remember. From the Soldiers who shivered and starved through the winter at Valley Forge to the doughboys crouched in the muddy trenches of France to the platoon who patrolled the hazy jungles of Vietnam and the young man or woman patrolling the mountains of Afghanistan, we remember and honor them all.
Veterans’ Day isn’t just a day for veterans – it’s a day for all Americans. It’s a day to remember why they were fighting and a day for all of us to begin our journey of protecting our freedom and the freedom of many future generations.
Thank you for honoring our veterans today. Let us walk toward tomorrow still honoring them…by living in the freedom they protected. Thank you for attending. God bless you and your families, God bless our troops and God bless America.
👋 Hi! I’m your smart assistant Amy!
Don’t know where to start? Type your requirements and I’ll connect you to an academic expert within 3 minutes.get help with your assignment