We learn in school that World War I ended on June 19, 1919 with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles; however, fighting actually ended seven months earlier, at the passing of the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918, what was to become known as Veterans Day, ended the hostilities of the "The War to End All Wars.”
The following year, at the command of Britain’s King George V, two minutes of silence were to be maintained throughout the realm at that hour and day henceforth to be known as Remembrance Day, in the United States, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day.
“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 and justice in the council of nations…”
On May 13, 1938, the United States Congress by joint resolution made Armistice Day official and declared the day to be “dedicated to the cause of world peace.”, then again on June 1, 1954, they amended the law and struck the word
Armistice and inserted in its place the word “Veterans.” – Later that same year, President Dwight D. Eisenhower issued the first “Veterans Day Proclamation”
Although the law has been amended numerous times, including changing the date and then back again, the intent was never lost. On this day we salute the gallant brave men and women who at one time or another, wrote a blank check made payable to United States of America for an amount of “up to, and including their life.”
As the Mayor of the City of Sunnyside, I have the distinct honor and privilege to proclaim this day and to put down in words how grateful I am to all those men and women I have served with, those who came before me, and those who continue to serve.
Thank you for your service, your sacrifice, and your sacred honor.