To the editor:
A veteran is a fellow citizen, an ordinary person who at one significant point in his or her life made out a blank check payable to the United States of America for any amount up to and including life, itself.
A prayer: Lord, hold our troops in your loving hands. Protect them as they protect us. Bless them and their families for the selfless acts they perform for us in our time of need. Amen.
Every day is Veterans Day for those of us who work at VA. I'm proud to recognize men and women, like you, who go above and beyond your day-to-day responsibilities in service to veterans and their families.
Their bravery, their resourcefulness and their patriotism marks them as America's finest citizens; Americans who stepped out of the crowd and swore an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies. Each of the men and women we honor today uttered the words of that soldier's oath. They served under those words; some bled and others died for them. The decision to serve changed their lives forever.
Let us today, therefore, remember Lincoln's charge to us: "With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation's wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan - to do all which may achieve and cherish a just, and lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations."
Question: Which is the correct spelling of Veterans Day?
a. "Veterans Day"
b. "Veteran's Day"
c. "Veterans' Day"
Answer - a. Veterans Day
Veterans Day does not include an apostrophe but does include an "s" at the end of "veterans" because it is not a day that "belongs" to veterans, it is a day for honoring all veterans. Find out more about our national holiday honoring all veterans at www.va.gov/opa/vetsday/index.asp
Veterans Day 2011 - What's the Point?
On this Veterans Day, please remember:
It is the veteran, not the preacher, who has given you freedom of religion.
It is the veteran, not the reporter, who has given you freedom of the press.
It is the veteran, not the poet, who has given you freedom of speech.
It is the veteran, not the liberal protesters, who has given you freedom to assemble.
It is the veteran, not the lawyer, who has given you the right to a fair trial.
It is the veteran, not the politician, who has given you the right to vote.
It is the veteran who salutes the flag, who serves under the flag.
Let us honor them all on this day.
And that's the point.
Today, Nov. 11, 2011, is Veterans Day, honoring Americans who have served their country in the armed forces. Nov. 11 was originally called Armistice Day because it was on this day in 1918 that the First World War came to an end. The armistice was signed at 11 a. m., on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of the year. After four years of brutal trench fighting, nine million soldiers had died and 21 million were wounded.
Our veterans swear an oath to neither king nor state. Our men and women in uniform swear allegiance to the U.S. Constitution, a document encompassing the vision of liberty and the rule of free men under law - a radical concept for some even today, but one that has kept America free and strong and a beacon of hope for people around the world for more than 200 years.
Why veterans serve: Those who serve do so not for glory, or power, or wealth, but for freedom, and that the simple recognition of service well performed - a sincere thank you - means more to most veterans than any other reward.
Director of Veterans Affairs