Many communities commemorate veterans,
with parades, ceremonies at war memorials,
and other special events. An increasingly
popular tradition is to have veterans visit and
discuss their military experiences with local
children, in their neighborhood schools.
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Numbers of Veterans
As of 2013, there are approximately 21,000,000
veterans in the United States, with six states
having more than 1,000,000 each. Ohio is one
with more than 1.1 million veterans.
Veterans Day is a U.S. Federal holiday
observed on November 11th.
It originally was known as
"Remembrance Day" and was
celebrated on November 11th, 1919, to
commemorate the signing on November
11, 1918 of the armistice that ended the
fighting in World War I. Similar
celebrations take place in Europe.
It was later established in 1926 under the name
of "Armistice Day" to officially commemorate the
signing of the Treaty. It was additionally declared a
federal holiday by Congress in May of 1938.
It was renamed "Veterans Day" in June of 1954, at
the suggestion of Alvin J. King to honor also, the
veterans of later wars, World War II, Korean War,
Vietnam, and now the Gulf War
During 1971-1977 the holiday was
observed on the 4th Monday in
It is celebrated in a variety of ways.
The annual wreath laying ceremony
at Arlington National Cemetery
(see: National Cemeteries) is an
honored tradition. During this
celebration the President or the Vice President, presents a wreath at It is followed
by music and a variety of speakers.
Another recent trend is for local businesses to offer free services for veterans, like
meals, museums, and car washes.
The poppy is the common floral symbol for
Veterans Day as well as Rememberance
Day in Canada and Europe.
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