Ed Moore

Mission Viejo, United States

Since childhood, I have enjoyed drawing and writing. My career centered on writing, but now that I am retired, I am focusing on my art.

Veteran's Day

An Open Letter to My Grandfather, Father, Son and their Friends in the Military…

In the United States, today is Veteran’s Day. A lot of people in this country are opposed to our military, and to you. But I, for one, am using this day to honor you and your service to this great country.

Even though you aren’t with us, grandpa, I remember your tales of fighting in WWI. The trenches. The bombs. The story of the longest hour leading up to 11 am on November 11, 1911. I recall the story of how you fought up to 10:59:59 that day, and at 11 am, everything stopped and the war was over. “All quiet on the Western Front,” they said.

It’s amazing to me how many people today don’t know this history of this day, so here is a look back at its history in the USA:

U.S. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice Day for November 12, 1919. The United States Congress passed a concurrent resolution seven years later on June 4, 1926, requesting the President issue another proclamation to observe November 11 with appropriate ceremonies. An Act (52 Stat. 351; 5 U. S. Code, Sec. 87a) approved May 13, 1938, made the 11th of November in each year a legal holiday; “a day to be dedicated to the cause of world peace and to be thereafter celebrated and known as ‘Armistice Day’.” In 1953, an Emporia, Kansas, shoe store owner named Al King had the idea to expand Armistice Day to celebrate all veterans, not just those who served in World War I. King had been actively involved with the American War Dads during World War II. He began a campaign to turn Armistice Day into “All” Veterans Day. The Emporia Chamber of Commerce took up the cause after determining that 90% of Emporia merchants as well as the Board of Education supported closing their doors on November 11, 1953, to honor veterans. With the help of then-U.S. Rep. Ed Rees, also from Emporia, a bill for the holiday was pushed through Congress. President Dwight Eisenhower signed it into law on May 26, 1954. Congress amended this act on November 8, 1954, replacing “Armistice” with Veterans, and it has been known as Veterans Day since.

And to my father: You are now blind in both eyes and 88. Most of your friends are dead or in nursing homes. But I want to thank you today for defending our country in WWII. You never talk about many of the things you saw or did. I can only imagine the horrors. Thank you and your buddies for freeing the French, England and other Europeans from the onslought of Hitler. Brave men all. I appreciate my freedom. Thank you.

And to my son: You came back from Iraq, and I thank God every day for your safe return. You and Matt did and saw some horrific things when we invaded that country for the second time. And like my father, you tend not to discuss it much. But I see you living with the horrors. And I see the pain ease as you hold your daughter, who lights up your eyes and your life. She lights up mine as well. I recall how nervous I was for the 8 months you were away. I lived in fear that two Marines would walk up to my doorstep with news. I am thankful that never happened to me, but it happened to others, and for them I cry openly and in my heart, and will forever more.

So today I will put out the American Flag and the Marine Corps flag, and fly them in your names. I will also say a prayer of thanks to God for the three of you, and your friends. I wish I could do more. Thank you.



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