Commemorating the WWI Centennial
More than 4 million American families sent their sons and daughters to serve in the Great War. 116,516 US soldiers died from combat and disease, a casualty rate far greater than WWII. Another 200,000 were wounded. More than 350,000 African Americans served in the US military as did Native Americans and other minorities. For the first time in history women joined the ranks of the US Armed Forces.
November 11, 1918, is generally regarded as the end of the war to end all wars. In November 1919, President Wilson proclaimed November 11 as the first commemoration of Armistice Day with the following words: “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 councils of the nations.” Armistice Day later became what we know today as Veterans Day.
On November 10 we will commemorate those who served and those who died in WWI 100 years ago, and while they are not with us today their sacrifice will always be remembered on Veterans Day.