A big thanks to all the military veterans out there!!

I didn’t go to the local Veterans’ Day memorial service in Great Falls (and I still feel kind of guilty about that), but I did want to put up a post saying thanks to all our military veterans.

There are always a number of daily cartoons that will send out a big thank you to the vets on Veterans’ Day. One of the best I’ve seen was the Over the Hedge Veterans’ Day cartoon from 2007.

Over The Hedge, Nov 11 2007

This year, UserFriendly had a week-long series about Veterans’ Day that was . . . very sincere, but a bit heartbreaking too. (While UserFriendly is a Canadian comic, Canadians celebrate Veterans’ Day on the same day we do, November 11. Veterans’ Day was originally called Armistice Day and was chosen by a number of countries as the day to celebrate the end of World War I. In 1954 the name was changed to Veterans Day in the United States because that would refer to all American military veterans, not just those who fought in World War I. Some countries celebrate November 11 as Armistice Day or Rememberance Day.)

Strip for Nov 10, 2008

Strip for Nov 11, 2008

Strip for Nov 12, 2008

Strip for Nov 13, 2008

Strip for Nov 14, 2008

Strip for Nov 15, 2008

And here are some links I found for groups that support veterans:

  • The USO – The USO has been around since before World War II. I thought they mainly sponsored entertainment shows and visits by popular performers for the troops, but this summer one of the custom cutter who worked for us during harvest was carrying around journals for people to write messages to the troops, and he said he’d gotten the idea off the USO site. And looking at their site, there’s a lot of other stuff they do too.
  • Soldiers’ Angels – On Veterans’s Day, Ace of Spades and Commander Salamander had links to the Valour-IT project run by Soldiers’ Angels. Valour-IT focuses on veterans who have physical disabilities such as hand wounds that make it hard to use some electronics. They started out by just supplying voice-controlled laptops, but the webpage says they’ve expanded beyond that and offer other devices in addition to the laptops to physically disabled veterans.
  • Operation Interdependence –  This organization was mentioned in a Veterans’ Day article in the Great Falls Tribune. They specialize in providing care packages for regularly deployed troops. The care packages provide reminders of home (and reminders that they’re appreciated and haven’t been forgotten) to troops out in the field, and includes stuff like sports clippings, magazines, games, and grooming aids.
  • True to the Red White and Blue – This is a locally-run charity, based in Great Falls. Their website is a little sparse, but I’ve seen them around town a number of times. They hold regular raffles and the lady who runs it is very nice to talk to.

There’s lots more out there (here’s a list of charities and support organizations from BlackFive‘s site), these are just a few I’ve run across personally. For anyone who’s interested, here’s the Department of Veterans’ Affairs page on the history of Veterans’ Day.

Cross-posted on my MySpace blog in case anyone has problems seeing the cartoons here.

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