See where to honor this Vet­eran’s Day

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Veter­ans Day, once known as Ar­mistice Day, was first cel­e­brated on Nov. 11, 1919, the an­niver­sary of the end of World War I.

In 1928, the United States Congress passed a res­o­lu­tion for Ar­mistice Day to be an an­nual ob­ser­va­tion, and by 1938, the day be­came a na­tional hol­i­day.

Dif­fer­ing from Memo­rial Day in May, Ar­mistice Day, which would be re­named Veter­ans Day in 1954 un­der Pres­i­dent Dwight Eisen­hower, pays trib­ute to veter­ans who sur­vived var­i­ous wars.

Memo­rial Day com­mem­o­rates those veter­ans who lost their lives. Amer­i­cans cel­e­brate Veter­ans Day, while res­i­dents of Great Bri­tain, Canada and Aus­tralia cel­e­brate Re­mem­brance Day.

Those who want to learn more about Veter­ans Day can con­sider the fol­low­ing facts:

Ac­cord­ing to the Amer­i­can Com­mu­nity Sur­vey, there were 19.3 mil­lion mil­i­tary veter­ans in the United States in 2014. Of those, 1.6 mil­lion were fe­male.

Cal­i­for­nia, Texas and Florida com­prise the states with the largest num­ber of veter­ans, equal­ing one mil­lion or more.

Veter­ans con­sist of peo­ple who served in the mil­i­tary. This in­cludes the Army, Navy, Ma­rine Corps, Air Force, and Coast Guard. Veter­ans serve in times of war and peace.

The word “vet­eran” comes from the Old English lan­guage and means “old, ex­pe­ri­enced soldier.” The first use of the word was doc­u­mented in 1789.

Although many veter­ans are work­ing, and the av­er­age an­nual in­come of male veter­ans is $37,000, some veter­ans con­tinue to be un­em­ployed. Ac­cord­ing to data from the U.S. Bu­reau of La­bor Sta­tis­tics, the over­all un­em­ploy­ment rate for veter­ans rose to 7.6 per­cent in Jan­uary 2013. The un­em­ploy­ment rate of post9/11 veter­ans or those who par­tic­i­pated in the Gulf War reached 6.2 per­cent.

Upon re­tir­ing or be­ing dis­charged, veter­ans may need help ac­cli­mat­ing to life out­side the mil­i­tary. The Depart­ment of Veter­ans Af­fairs says about 30 per­cent of Viet­nam War veter­ans have been di­ag­nosed with post­trau­matic stress disor­der, or PTSD.

Be­tween 1971 and 1977, Veter­ans Day was cel­e­brated on the fourth Mon­day in Oc­to­ber. It was changed back to its orig­i­nal date, No­vem­ber 11, in 1975 when Pres­i­dent Ger­ald Ford signed bill S.331 into law. The change went into ef­fect be­gin­ning in 1978.

An Amer­i­can soldier was buried at the na­tional ceme­tery in Ar­ling­ton on No­vem­ber 11, 1921. His iden­tity was un­known, and the gravesite is known as the “Tomb of the Un­known Soldier.” A guard from the So­ci­ety of the Honor Guard stands watch over the grave each year on Veter­ans Day, and the pres­i­dent or an­other high-rank­ing mem­ber of the gov­ern­ment places a wreath on the grave.

Veter­ans Day oc­curs each year on No­vem­ber 11, mark- ing the end of World War I. The day has evolved into a cel­e­bra­tion and re­mem­brance of the hero­ism of Amer­ica’s brave sol­diers.

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