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Tottenville History

Veterans Day

This Friday, November 11, is Veterans Day. 
·        Is it just a long weekend with Friday off from work or school?
·        Is it just a jump start for the holidays with Veterans Day sales at the Mall and online?
·        Is it just a holiday that you vaguely remember from history class that holds no meaning for you? 
What does the day really mean?
No, it does not mean a day only dedicated to our veterans who have died.  That’s Memorial Day, which we celebrated in May.
Veterans Day was originally known as Armistice Day,with the 1919 proclamation of President Wilson to commemorate the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month, when the fighting after WorldWar I ended with an armistice, to honor the veterans of World War I for achieving peace.  This was seventh months before the official end of the war that was to end all wars with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles.
Armistice Day became a legal holiday in 1938 as a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace. 
In 1954, November 11th became a day to honor American veterans of all wars, replacing the word armistice with veterans.  It was to be a celebration of all our veterans, living and deceased, to honor their willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.  Especially, it was to be a day to give thanks to living veterans for their service.
So for Veterans Day this year, may I suggest 3 ideas for celebrating the day from its history?
1.      Take the time to contact every veteran you can and say, “Thank you,” whether in person, on the phone, or over the Internet.
2.      Learn more about the history and of the honor roll of Tottenville veterans from the links below.
3.      Let’s put emphasis onto the attainment of world peace, so that maybe at some point the last war we wage WILL be the war that ended all war.  Before you say that’s a utopian dream, consider reading the review of Captain Paul K. Chappell’s book The End of War
Captain Chappell is a veteran whoserved in the U.S. Army for seven years, loving and serving our country.  He points out new ways to look at peace and ending war that are not hopelessly ideal and naïve, but rather supported by common sense practical actions that anyone who loves America as he does can do if they so choose.
TottenvilleHistorical Society:
Veterans– Honor Roll
U.S.  Dept. of Veterans Affairs:
VeteransDay History 

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