Veterans Day is Sunday, Nov. 11. First known as Armistice Day, President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed Nov. 11, 1919 as the first Armistice Day after the ending of World War I, on the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.”
On that first holiday honoring those who had served and died in that war, 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 with 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 land justice in the councils of the nations.”
An Act approved in May of 1938, made Armistice Day an official holiday, “dedicated to the cause of world peace,” and in 1954, the name was changed to Veterans Day, honoring all who had served.
Unlike some holidays that are now observed as Monday holidays, Veterans Day continues to be celebrated on Nov. 11, regardless of the day of the week on which it falls. This has been done to preserve the historic significance of the date and focus attention on the very purpose for which those of this nation observe it – as a celebration to honor America’s veterans for their patriotism and their love of country; for their willingness to serve and sacrifice.
Locally, valley veterans will be honored at two programs this weekend. On Friday, Nov. 9, the public is invited to the 4th annual Veterans Day program at the Garland Tabernacle, beginning at 6:30 p.m.
This family event, titled “A Tribute to Our Veterans,” is hosted by the Tremonton Women’s Civic League. This year’s entertainment will be provided pianist Heston Warr, The Tingeys, Barry and Amy Carter, Desi Gross, Brady Stewart and the group Reflections.
On Sunday, Nov. 11, the Garland Tabernacle will again be the site of a Veterans Day event, this one a musical fireside beginning at 7 p.m.
Music will be provided by the Bear River Community Chorale, the Imperial Glee Club and the Northern Utah Flute Quartet.
Retired two-star Major General Peter Cooke, 63, will be the evening’s guest speaker. Cooke had a 39-year career in the military and was the commanding general at the U.S., Army 96th Regional Readiness Command in 2005, overseeing 10,000 soldiers and civilians in seven states.