Salute those who serve on November 11, 2017.

By Grace Haynes
September 08, 2017
Salute those who serve on November 11, 2017
| Credit: Ariel Skelley/ Getty Images

Veterans Day is November 11, 2017. Say thank you to the brave Americans who have served and currently serve in our armed forces on this federal holiday. Because it falls on a Saturday this year, the holiday will be observed on Friday, November 10. Salute the service, sacrifice, and patriotism of the courageous men and women who have fought to protect our country.

How did Veterans Day come to be? President Woodrow Wilson created this federal holiday on November 11, 1919, to honor WWI veterans. It was originally called Armistice Day because it was held exactly a year after the end of the war, and the purpose of the day was to honor veterans and promote world peace. After WWII and the Korean War, President Dwight D. Eisenhower changed the name to Veterans Day to include all of the Americans veterans who fought for their country.

On this day of remembrance, many public demonstrations of gratitude will be taking place across the country. What better way to honor and salute our veterans than with a parade? Patriotic floats and other spirited displays will take over streets across the South during the holiday weekend. One of the biggest parades has been held in Birmingham every November 11 since 1947. Raymond Weeks, a Birmingham native, helped lead the movement to urge President Eisenhower to create a holiday that honored all American veterans in the 1950s.

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Just as we honor famous war heroes, we honor the heroes within our own families and friends who have bravely served our country and those who continue to defend and protect each day. As Maya Angelou said, "How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!" Take time to thank the heroes and she-roes throughout history and those at home and overseas on November 11. Find more inspiring Veterans Day quotes here.