On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, the Germans signed the Armistice, which ended the major hostilities of World War I. The “Great War” would officially continue for seven more months, and it would ultimately end with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles on June 28, 1919, in Versailles, France.
Today is a day that marks that first November 11th event and honors the roughly 22 million military veterans in the United States today. It is Veterans Day [a.k.a. Armistice Day & Remembrance Day]!
I deeply appreciate those who have served and those who currently serve in our military. To me, they are all heroes. Whether you’re supportive of the U.S. government and the U.S. military or not, it is fitting to honor those you have selflessly served to protect and defend our freedoms.
Every veteran has paid a price, and some still carry the “marks” of that service. Father Denis Edward O’Brien, United States Marine Corps, once used these words to describe a veteran:
“Some veterans bear visible signs of their service: a missing limb, an aged scar, a certain look in the eye. Others may carry the evidence inside them: a pin holding a bone together, a piece of shrapnel in the leg, or perhaps another sort of inner steel; the soul’s ally forged in the refinery of adversity. Except in parades, however, the men and women who have kept America safe wear no badge or emblem.”
So, to my fellow veterans I know I want to say: Thank you! I appreciate you, and I praise God for your selfless service protecting our freedom.
Take time to thank the veterans you know today.
Rev. Shawn Cossin is senior pastor at Heritage Church in the Quad Cities.