Americans everywherer will once again observe Veterans Day on Monday, November 11, 2019.
We will stand proud in local ceremonies around the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes regions to honor the sacrifices and the victories of our soldiers – past, present, and future. In so doing, we reaffirm our pride in this nation's servicemen and servicewomen and, of course, we turn our thoughts and prayers to those young soldiers whom we've lost from here at home in the recent past.
Since the terrible unfolding of September 11, 2001 this generation has realized, all too painfully, that our freedom here at home can be threatened at any moment. We have been reminded, as well, that our troops always stand ready to protect this freedom again and again. The freedoms we cherish have been hard-won by the soldiers of previous generations and by those of this generation who have continued to serve. They are true American heroes, and we are grateful to each and every one of them.
Sacrifice is the fundamental truth that we remember and honor on Veterans Day.
To always honor our veterans is the reason that New York State government seeks to constantly recognize military service through the development of new laws and the administration of programs and services that seek to address the many challenges facing today's veterans in areas such as health care, employment and education.
The state Division of Veterans' Affairs was established in 1945 to assist veterans, members of the armed forces, their families and their dependents. Since then, the division -- in concert with its offices in counties locally and statewide -- has strongly advocated for New York's millions of veterans and veterans' issues at the local, state and national levels. It's a proud history of service.
The observance of Veterans Day is appropriate and meaningful as one way that we, as American citizens, collectively show our support for our troops, as well as keep those we know in our thoughts and prayers.
It's an occasion, as well, to honor the memories of all those who have gone before.
Earlier this year, it was my great privilege to salute the service of a local World War II United States Navy veteran, the late Paul C. “Digger” Vendetti – an Elmira native and longtime caretaker at Woodlawn National Cemetery – by inducting him into the New York State Senate Veterans’ Hall of Fame.
For more on area Veterans Day observances, see:
Ithaca Journal, "Ithaca College to celebrate Veterans Day"