Veterans deserve our thanks

By Observer editorial November 09, 2012 02:51 pm

The 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month is coming up Sunday.

It’s a chance for our nation, and for us as individuals, to say thanks to veterans for their service to our country. 

Veterans Day traces its roots to World War I. In 1918, the armistice was signed signaling the end of “the war to end all wars.”  President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed the day as Armistice Day and a tradition of observing the day was born. Since 1954, 11/11 has been set aside as Veterans Day. 

Communities and organizations throughout Northeast Oregon are planning special events, parades and gatherings to honor military veterans today through Veterans Day. 

It’s a time to remember how America rose to greatness. Military veterans led the charge in defending our freedom and protect our country, making our path safe for the pursuit of life, liberty and happiness.

It’s a debt we can never fully repay. But we can resolve to never forget military veterans’ valor and sacrifice.

Younger generations who enjoy the benefits of the land of the free may criticize older folks for moving slowly and becoming roadblocks in our fast-paced daily lives.

Previous generations, though, moved fast to defend the United States of America. They helped ensure the freedoms that Americans often take for granted.

Whatever age, from the hundreds of thousands who continue to serve in Afghanistan and around the world to senior citizens, military veterans deserve our salute at 11:11 on the 11th and every day. Thousands have served, defended and some have paid the ultimate sacrifice to preserve our freedoms.

On Sunday, it might be a good idea to go to a parade or another event and thank a veteran in person. Or, if that is not impossible, consider stopping for a minute of silent salute at 11:11 on the 11th to consider how much better the world and America is because of military veterans’ service to our country.