Honoring Veterans Everyday
October 25, 2017
Emporia, Kansas, obviously isn’t the largest town in the world. In fact, we actually are pretty small. While this might be true, that doesn’t mean that we don’t have any good ideas. We actually helped with the idea to start Veterans Day. I will tell you about Veterans Day and how Emporia celebrates. Also, I will tell you about how that has impacted the community.
Before I get too far into talking about Veterans Day, I should probably explain it. For those of you that aren’t aware, Veterans Day is a national holiday celebrated in the USA to remember and honor those that have served our country and those that are currently serving. The military is a very important part of our successful country, and without it, our country would crumble and be taken over by another country. Many people have given their lives for the wellbeing of ours. I have researched and learned more about this holiday, so I will share that with you and maybe you will understand and respect Veterans just a little bit more.
Veterans Day first was celebrated in 1919 to celebrate the 1 year anniversary of the end of World War 1. When the holiday was first celebrated, it was actually called Armistice Day. This holiday was celebrated annually after this, but wasn’t actually considered a national holiday until 1938. In 1954 Dwight D. Eisenhower changed the name from Armistice Day to Veterans Day. Former President Eisenhower is actually originally from Kansas! Every year the holiday is celebrated on November 11 marking the anniversary of the end of WW1. This holiday is often forgotten or ignored. Many people don’t really cherish and understand how important it actually is. Veterans Day is actually very important to me personally, because my stepdad is the National Guard. He has served for many years and has been deployed 3 times. He is a very hard worker, and I am proud that he has served our country. My story is just one of millions that are like this; where families are missing their family member because they voluntarily went to protect our country. Many of those family members sadly don’t return home. Any reason for a veteran death is very saddening and shows the true reason why Veterans Day deserves more than it receives. These people are choosing to risk their lives and move away from their family just to protect YOU! This holiday isn’t just celebrating modern day Veterans, it is celebrating all Veterans. From the Revolutionary War, all the way up through the modern day conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, every soldier matters and deserves to be appreciated.
In the town of Emporia, KS we celebrate Veterans Day the same way I imagine many other towns and cities do, with a parade! On November 11 (Veterans Day) we host a parade. Downtown in Emporia, you will also notice around the holiday that on the lamp posts are banners with Veterans from Emporia and surrounding communities. This is put on by the Freedom Fest Committee. This committee raises money for the Local All Veterans Memorial a memorial located near the Cottonwood River to celebrate veterans, again, in the Emporia area. If you are visiting Emporia, I would highly recommend stopping here. It is very beautiful since is is right next to a river, and the David Traylor Zoo is right across the street! There is a lot of history, and very interesting artifacts and information. A few of the artifacts are an anchor, a WWII (World War 2) tank, and a helicopter! Maybe you will stop by if you are in the area.
Veterans Day is a very important holiday that is severely underestimated. It honors those that gave and are giving their lives for you and me. This holiday is celebrated in Emporia (the founding city) with a parade. Memorials also keep the celebration going all year long! I hope that you will celebrate this year on November 11, but the world would be great if everyone acted like every day was Veteran’s Day!