Veterans Day: Freedom is Not Free

Freedom is Not Free. Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

In October of 2001, President Bush observed Veterans Day by announcing the Lessons of Liberty Initiative, a way for students to learn about America and its values, as well as the men and women who have been called on to defend our freedom -- Veterans.

"We must remember that many who served in our military never lived to be called veterans. We must remember many had their lives changed forever by experiences or the injuries of combat. All veterans are examples of service and citizenship for every American to remember and to follow." -- President George W.

Bush, Oct. 30, 2001

Some Veterans Day Facts

  • Regardless of the day of the week, Veterans Day is observed on November 11.
  • The date was chosen to commemorate World War I, which ended on November 11, 1918.
  • Veterans Day was established by Congress on June 4, 1926.
  • The purpose of Veterans Day and Memorial Day are often confused. Memorial Day is for honoring military personnel who died in service to their country. Veterans Day is for thanking ALL men and women who have served honorably in the military during times of war and peace.

"We're a nation of patriots. The attacks of September 11th, and the attacks that have followed, were designed to break our spirit. But instead, they've created a new spirit in America. We have a renewed spirit of patriotism. We see it in the countless flags that are flying everywhere in America. We hear it in familiar phrases that move us more deeply than ever before." -- President George W.

Bush, Oct. 30, 2001

Some Facts About Veterans

  • As of 2013, there were about 21.8 million veterans in the United States. More than 1.3 million of them served in more than one war.
     
  • Every year, about 80,000 veterans are buried in one of the cemeteries of the National Cemetery system.
  • Veterans own about 9% of all U.S. businesses.

  • About 22 veterans commit suicide every day.

Arlington National Cemetery
More than 260,000 people are buried at Arlington Cemetery. Veterans from all the nation's wars are buried in the cemetery, from the American Revolution through the Persian Gulf War and Somalia. Pre-Civil War dead were reinterred after 1900.

The Virtual Wall
All 58,196 names engraved with honor on the Vietnam Memorial. Includes biographic information and audio remembrances on a wonderful Web site. "...Never forget the names, the names, the names - for they hold the answer."