Actions louder than days off: How to honor veterans this Veteran’s Day

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Although Heritage does not take the day off for Veteran’s Day, there are still plenty of reasons to celebrate the holiday and ways you can do so without the day off. The American holiday started in 1919 as “Armistice Day” on the anniversary of World War I. In 1938, Congress renamed the day to honor veterans rather than the conclusion of wars. Veteran’s Day transcends time by honoring veterans of all wars, both living and dead.

Now, in order to truly pay respects and honor veterans Nov. 11, you can express your support with buttons, stickers or shirts (outside of school). You can also wear a  “Buddy Poppy” to show your support. Disabled and needy veterans in VA hospitals assemble Buddy Poppies. By purchasing a Buddy Poppy you financially aid a veteran in need. While buying, you can also add an additional donation for these veterans. 

If you prefer to express your respect through the arts rather than commodities, then you can write a letter to a veteran. Operation Gratitude provides a service to send letters to first responders, new recruits, wounded heroes, deployed troops and veterans year round. If you can’t find the right words for your piece though, you can lean on other works of writing to show your respect. Learning about veteran-inspired works such as “In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae (a poem used since the 1900s to raise money for troops and incite joining the army) shows your knowledge of veterans’ history and efforts. Additionally, you can produce art to honor veterans; the only limit is your own creativity.

Keeping with Heritage tradition, lower school students attended a Veteran’s Day ceremony in the gymnasium the morning of Nov. 11. Each grade level prepared a song, and some grade levels, such as third grade, created Uncle Sam-inspired headbands. (Photo/American Heritage Facebook)

Most importantly, to honor veterans you must remember them. Whether you do this by passing on their story, reading about their experiences, volunteering at a veteran’s service organization or simply saying “thank you” when you see them, you can celebrate Veteran’s Day and create an impact without taking the day off from school. Happy Veteran’s Day and to all veterans, thank you for your service.

“In Flanders Fields” by John McCrae

In Flanders fields the poppies blow 

Between the crosses row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly 

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago 

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved and were loved and now we lie 

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe: 

To you, from failing hands we throw 

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die 

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow,

In Flanders fields.

Click here for ways companies are honoring veterans.

Bella Ramirez, senior, is a Marvel fanatic and hardworking leader. Ramirez leads Key Club and French Honors Society with a hope to inspire thinking globally and acting with kindness. She also runs le Congrès de la Culture Français en Floride’s (CCFF) social media accounts and is in charge of international publication Pressing the Future. Her passion for creativity continues through her filmmaking ventures such as “The Adventures of Mister Perfect and Friends,” the charity film with all proceeds going to Project Alive. Ramirez is excited for the upcoming year of The Patriot Post and is honored to lead the print publication to new heights with her wonderful staff.

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