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Veterans Day

Veterans Day 2021 – Hope, Resilience and Freedom Commemorated on the Suncoast

| Angela Naff |

On the eleventh day of the eleventh month, during the eleventh hour of 1918, all major fighting of World War I ended. The day would be called Armistice Day in remembrance of the Armistice with Germany enacted on that day. Thirty-nine years later, in 1954, the day would be renamed Veterans Day and commemorated on November 11th each year thereafter. Today, this day remains a day each year set aside for recognizing all service members who have ever served our country in any capacity or branch of armed forces.

Veterans Day is a celebration not just of those who died in the course of their service, like Memorial Day earlier in the year, but rather a moment to recognize everyone who gave their time and energy in pursuit of freedom. Whether reservist, active military during conflicts, or enlisted at the ready in various corners of the world, all sacrificed to ensure the freedoms we hold dear in this country.

Whether leaving loved ones behind, hours spent without sleep guarding locations spanning the globe, or even in armed combat, service members have made many sacrifices in pursuit of these roles. Money alone will never be enough of a reason why they put on uniforms and do everything called on them to do to continue to secure our freedoms. This is a calling and one not all of us are able to follow, so for one day, we shake the hands of those who followed a call to service for each of our sakes.

Service members give all of us hope for our children, our future, and our very existence. That we have the ability to make so many other choices, people in other countries will never experience. That freedom is a gift despite whatever political affiliation you are, pandemics might hit or other trials we go through. It is not given lightly nor free of charge. Rather, through the sacrifice, blood, sweat, and tears of those who serve, our freedom is secured. November 11, 2021, let us all, for a moment, think back to what life might be like for us here without these freedoms. Sure there is a lot of fighting about each side of the political ballet, but service to the country doesn’t come with a label of Democrat or Republican. Rather, it just has a tag that says USA hanging in the hearts of those that put on a uniform in serving our country.

This Veterans Day, thank any you know, come across or might be introduced to that served this country for the gift they provided us. The ones that left these shores in time of war and in time of freedom to train for the best and worst job of their lives. No one signs up to lay down their lives in the course of their career, but every serviceperson that ever served in our military forces knows that is a possibility when they sign on the dotted line. They are adding to the history, the resilience, the pride, and the stature of a country that, through good years and bad decades, gets to say we will always pursue the freedoms our forefathers dreamed of achieving when they came to America.

November 11, 2021, is not about the conflict as it is a remembrance of the day the conflict ended in one major war. It is a day to contemplate the joys we have every day as a direct result of the sacrifices so many who you never met, nor may ever cross paths with, gave in your honor. When you see the passerby in fatigues today, the car with purple heart license plates or that relative you know served – shake their hand and say thanks.

Thank you for your service to those of you reading this who we will never meet in person. Every one of us appreciates you more than words can say.


Photos courtesy of Deposit Photos

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