Veterans Day is an annual federal holiday in the United States honoring military veterans. Major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 with the German signing of Armistice. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice Day for Nov. 11, 1919.
In 1917, there were only 127,000 men and women in the regular army. By 1918, there were 4 million who had served. Thirteen thousand women served. There were 53,513 who were killed in action in only 18 months of the war: 204,000 were wounded and 58,000 were gassed; of that number 2,000 died.
At War Memorial Park in Livingston there is a Plaque that reads “In honor of the former pupils of the Livingston Township schools who served their country in World War 1917-1918.” Followed by the 45 names of those who served; may their names be held in lasting reverence.”
In proclaiming the holiday, President Woodrow Wilson said: “To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and the gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the Councils of the Nations.” In 1954 the day was changed to Veterans Day and included all veterans of all wars.
This was “The Great War, The War To End All Wars.” Let us never forget and always remember their sacrifice.
Sumbitted by Brian Boyle, member of Veterans of Foreign Wars American Legion, Livingston.