Salinans gathered on a bright, blustery, Tuesday morning at the 11th hour, of the 11th day, of the 11th month to honor all veterans.
A nice crowd braved the cold wind and gathered for Veterans Day ceremonies at the Salina / Saline County War Memorial in Sunset Park. The event included the National Anthem, the Pledge of Allegiance, “Taps”, “Amazing Grace”, and a 21 gun Salute.
Retired Chief Warrant Officer Mark Baxa was the guest speaker. He thanked all veterans, and their families, saying “it’s important to remember that veterans are defending us 365 days a year.” Baxa added “and while the utopian idea of a society without wars is ideal, don’t forget that wars have liberated slaves, stopped genocide, and toppled terrorists.”
Veterans Day, formerly known as Armistice Day, was originally set as a U.S. legal holiday to honor the end of World War I, which officially took place on November 11, 1918. In legislation that was passed in 1938, November 11 was “dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be hereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day.'” As such, this new legal holiday honored World War I veterans.
In 1954, after having been through both World War II and the Korean War, the 83rd U.S. Congress — at the urging of the veterans service organizations — amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting the word “Veterans.” With the approval of this legislation on June 1, 1954, Nov. 11 became a day to honor American veterans of all wars.