Tag Archives: Veteran’s Day

Blogging typo rewrites ninety-nine year history of Veterans Day

A typo in “Truce” shifted historical data of the first Armistice Day celebration in 1919 to a future date of the one-hundredth anniversary.  Here’s the corrected post.

Truce

A signed armistice on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 signaled the end of World War I. The first Armistice Day celebration was one year later, November 11, 1919. My parents had two children then. World War II ended September 2, 1945.  Then, my parents had nine children, ages six to thirty-one, and grandchildren ages up to age seven. Several of those grandsons later served in the Korean Conflict and Viet Nam.

We honored all the dead in our family—military and civilian—on Memorial Day and the living military men on Veterans Day. My mother called the May holiday Decoration Day and the November holiday Armistice Day. We spent the May morning at the Chowchilla Cemetery placing flowers on any veteran’s grave. After my father died in November 1953, my mother insisted that we adorn his grave with flowers on Armistice Day although he was a civilian during all the wars. She said, “It might look bad if his grave was bare on that day so many neighbors visited the cemetery.”

The red poppy became symbolic for Veterans Day, but my mother, a widow, seldom had a spare quarter to donate in exchange for the handmade paper flower. One year, the veteran accepted a dime and handed her a red paper poppy. She pinned it to the right side of her dress. When my brother-in-law, a WWII veteran, saw it, he insisted she move it over her heart. To keep the peace, a truce of sorts, she wore it there until he left. Then, she moved it back to the right side.

“What’d you do that for, Grandma?” one of the grandsons born during World War II asked. “The vets pin their poppies on the left.”

“That’s why I moved it,” she said, her black brows drawn together. “They’re men, but I’m a woman.”

 

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Truce

A signed armistice on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month of 1918 signaled the end of World War I. The first Armistice Day celebration was November 11,  1919. My parents had two children then. World War II ended September 2, 1945. At the end of WWII, my parents had nine children, ages six to thirty-one, and grandchildren ages up to age seven. Several of those grandsons later served in the Korean Conflict and Viet Nam.

We honored all the dead in our family—military and civilian—on Memorial Day and the living military men on Veterans Day. My mother called the May holiday Decoration Day and the November holiday Armistice Day. We spent the May morning at the Chowchilla Cemetery placing flowers on any veteran’s grave. After my father died in November 1953, my mother insisted that we adorn his grave with flowers on Armistice Day although he was a civilian during all the wars. She said, “It might look bad if his grave was bare on that day so many neighbors visited the cemetery.”

The red poppy became symbolic for Veterans Day, but my mother, a widow, seldom had a spare quarter to donate in exchange for the handmade paper flower. One year, the veteran accepted a dime and handed her a red paper poppy. She pinned it to the right side of her dress. When my brother-in-law, a WWII veteran, saw it, he insisted she move it over her heart. To keep the peace, a truce of sorts, she wore it there until he left. Then, she moved it back to the right side.

“What’d you do that for, Grandma?” one of the grandsons born during World War II asked. “The vets pin their poppies on the left.”

“That’s why I moved it,” she said, her black brows drawn together. “They’re men, but I’m a woman.”

 

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Palindrome moment 11/11/11

    November 11 is a well-recognized United States holiday to remember military veterans. In the United Kingdom, today is called Remembrance Day. This Veteran’s Day and Remembrance Day will be remembered, revered, perhaps feared until it rolls around again in the next century. What makes this day more significant than any triple-number day?
    Today is a binary day 11/11/11. Twice on this Friday, morning and evening, a once-in-a-century event will occur at eleven minutes and eleven seconds after 11:00 a.m. (11.11.11 on 11.11.11). At that moment, the time and date will be a perfect same-numbered palindrome. That is, in written form it will read the same backward and forwards.
    History records a cataclysmic weather event in the U.S. on November 11, 1911 with record high and lows on that date, temperatures dropping from the mid-seventies to below zero within hours.
    This morning, couples will wed at 11.11.11. Others will climb a mountain or seal a business deal. Me? My fingers will be clicking computer keys, sealing an eleventh keystroke, eleventh word, eleventh sentence, eleventh paragraph, or eleventh page to A Time to Die, a mystery I’m writing for National November Writing Month. I’ll give it a double chance, morning and evening. Maybe inspiration will fall at that particular moment this evening not only to cross the 50,000 word finish line early, but to propel this first draft into an award-winning novel.
    Oh well, can’t blame me for capitalizing on the moment.

On a more somber note, click HERE to see Armistice Day around the world on Armistice Day 11/11/11

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