Facts, fig­ures for Vet­er­ans Day

The Signal - - Food & Entertainment - By Sig­nal Staff

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.

▪ 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, equalling 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 Òvet­er­anÓ comes from the Old English lan­guage and means Òold, ex­pe­ri­enced sol­dier.Ó 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 post-9/11 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 post-trau­matic 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.

▪ 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.” Each year on Vet­er­ans Day, the pres­i­dent or an­other high-rank­ing mem­ber of the gov­ern­ment places a wreath on the grave as the guard from the So­ci­ety of the Honor Guard stands watch over the grave.

Vet­er­ans Day oc­curs each year on Nov. 11, mark­ing 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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