The Utah Farm Bureau Federation would like to recognize, honor and thank all veterans for their service to our country on this Veterans Day holiday.

Both Veterans Day and Memorial Day were established to recognize and honor the men and women who have worn the uniform of the United States Armed Forces. Memorial Day is observed on the last Monday in May, was originally set aside as a day for remembering and honoring military personnel who died in the service of their country, particularly those who died in battle or as a result of wounds sustained in battle. Veterans Day is intended to thank and honor all those who served honorably in the military—living and dead—whether in wartime or peace. In fact, Veterans Day is largely intended to thank living Veterans for their service, to acknowledge that their contributions to our national security are appreciated, and to underscore the fact that all 19 million of those who served—not only those who died—have sacrificed and done their duty.

According to the USO, it was first observed on November 11, 1919, as Armistice Day in honor of the first anniversary of the end of World War I, which officially ended on the “eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month” in 1918. In 1926, Congress called for an annual observance of the anniversary and by 1938 it was an official federal holiday. A few decades later, in 1954, President Dwight D. Eisenhower officially changed the name of the holiday from Armistice Day to Veterans Day, as it is currently known today.

In 2016, President Obama signed the Veterans Day Moment of Silence Act. The law requires that the President issue a proclamation calling on the people of the United States to observe a two-minute national moment of silence on Veterans Day at 12:11 p.m. Mountain standard time. 

While it is important to thank all those who have served or are serving on a regular basis, on Veterans Day it’s especially important to take an extra moment to show military members gratitude for their sacrifice. The USO suggests some ideas, beyond simply saying “thank you for your service:”

  1. Attend a Veterans Day event
  2. Ask a veteran about their time in the military
  3. Display the U.S. flag in your home
  4. Volunteer for, or donate to, a military support nonprofit like the USO or the Major Brent Taylor Foundation
  5. Read a book or watch a movie about U.S. military history

Thank you again to all our veterans.