On November 11 each year, as a country we recognize the people who have served in United States armed forces. This week in our blog you will get an overview of the history of Veterans Day, some statistics about the U.S. veterans, and the disturbing situations of a surprising number of veterans.
Veterans Day History
On the 11th day of the 11th month at 11:00 the Armistice that ended World War 1. On the first anniversary of marking the end of the war, November 11, 1919, the First Armistice Day was celebrated. Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance, and November 11 became a national holiday beginning in 1938. President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1954 to change the name to Veterans Day. The day honors military veterans with parades and speeches across the nation and a ceremony at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia. The ceremony honors and thanks all who served in the U.S. armed forces.
In their 2018 American Community Survey, the U.S. Census reports the interesting statistics below.
18.0 million military veterans
1.7 million female veterans
12.0% veterans who were black
7.2% veterans were Hispanic
50.1% veterans who are age 65 or older.
8.1% younger than age 35
Where are the Veterans now?
World War II ended more than 70 years ago, but many of the veterans who fought in the war are still around to thank. According to the most recent estimates, around 450,000 of the 16 million people who fought in the Second World War are alive in 2019. The National WWII Museum estimates that around 350 pass away each day, which is why the museum is dedicated to preserving World War II history through first-hand, oral accounts.
Texas along with California and Florida are the three U.S. states whose veteran populations exceed 1 million. These states are just a fraction of the 18.2 million veterans scattered in all parts of the U.S.
People who served in the military tend to have completed higher levels of education than those who have not enlisted. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 37.1 percent of U.S. veterans have completed some college or have an associate's degree and 27.7 percent have earned at least a bachelor's degree.
The National Coalition for Homeless Veterans reports more than 40,000 veterans are living without homes. Of that population a disproportionate number of these homeless veterans are younger.
If you are looking for honorable ways to supporting those veterans, please see the list of suggestions on MentalFloss.
Dean and Draper
Whether you hang your flag out tomorrow, go to a parade, reach out to help a veteran, or thank veterans for their service we hope that you appreciate an enjoy Veterans Day.
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Sources: National World War II Museum, U.S. Census, Mational Conference of State legislatures, National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, MentalFloss.