Ways to Show your Appreciation in Honor of Veterans Day

Veterans DayVeterans Day is about a month away, which means that it’s time to start thinking about how you plan to honor those who have served their country. There are a lot of different ways that you can show your appreciation for what they have done, from simply flying a few military stick flags to mark the occasion to volunteering your time to help make the world a better place.

Attend A Veterans Day Event

Veterans Day Parade, photo by MarineCorps NewYork
Veterans Day Parade, photo by MarineCorps NewYork

Like most holidays, Veterans Day is marked by a variety of events. Some of them are simple ceremonies that commemorate the occasion, while others are charity events that help to raise money to support veterans. Attending one of these events is a great way to show your respect for veterans. It also offers a good opportunity for parents to expose their children to the holiday and help teach them about the military.

marine lapel pinIt’s important to dress appropriately when you attend these events. When in doubt, dress for a relatively formal occasion. It’s appropriate to wear a small number of military pins or similar decorations. It can also be appropriate to carry small military stick flags to some of these events, especially those that honor specific organizations that have their own flags.

Donate Or Volunteer

Most soldiers fight to make a difference in the world, and volunteering to make a difference on your own is a good way to honor that fight. There are plenty of veteran’s organizations that could use the support for anything from decorating events with stick flags to helping elderly veterans with their daily lives. People who can’t donate their time can instead donate their money to help. Even if it doesn’t seem like much, every little bit can make a difference.

Fly Your American Flag

Buy a Fiberglass FlagpoleThere aren’t any bad times to fly an American flag, but Veterans Day is a particularly appropriate time for doing so. Most people who own a flagpole will fly a large flag from it, and many people who don’t will hang one from a railing or other such surface.

People who want to fly a flag but lack the space for one can make use of stick flags. They’re good for decorating small spaces when you use them on their own, but they can also adorn larger surfaces in groups. If you use a group of them, it’s best to place them in a regular and symmetrical pattern to make sure that nothing looks out of place.

Ask A Veteran About Their Service

American flag on stickVeterans are a source of living history, and that history is slowly being forgotten. You can learn a great deal about what it was like to live through past conflicts by taking a few hours to speak with a veteran. Be sure to schedule the meeting well in advance, since many veterans have plans for Veterans Day. Checking in with local veteran’s organizations are the best way to find someone who is willing and able to meet with you, and they can usually handle the scheduling.

There are a few things you should bring to the meeting. Consider bringing a small gift, like a set of veteran lapel pins, as a way of thanking the veteran for their time. You should also bring either a pen and paper or an audio recording device, to make sure that you don’t miss anything that they have to tell you.

Write A Thank You Note

Even people who can’t attend an event or visit a local veteran can still express their gratitude for their service. A simple thank you note, even from a stranger, can do a lot to brighten a person’s day. There are plenty of services who can help you to get in touch with veterans who would appreciate the note, so you normally don’t need to worry about looking up addresses.

This is another appropriate time to consider sending a small gift. Military pins are a reasonable choice, especially for people that you don’t know, but a more personalized gift is also excellent if you can arrange it. When in doubt, don’t hesitate to ask your local veteran’s organization.

Don’t Confuse Veterans Day And Memorial Day

Army Grave Marker
Military grave markers are very popular for display on Memorial Day

It’s common for people to forget the difference between Veterans Day and Memorial Day, but it’s important not to make that mistake when you’re attending an event or speaking to a veteran. Veterans Day exists to honor everyone who has served in the armed forces, while Memorial Day honors those who gave their lives for the cause.

Visit A VA Hospital

walnut table bases 3 flags
Small stick flags in a base make nice gifts for veterans

It’s easy for people who listen to speeches and look at decorations to forget the cost of war. It’s important to remember that the people who serve their country sometimes suffer injuries that can last the rest of their lives, and many of those people are forgotten. Taking a day to visit them in a VA hospital can brighten their moods for weeks to come, so it’s an excellent way to show your gratitude for their sacrifices.

A visit to the hospital can also be a useful lesson for children who are old enough to understand their sacrifice. If you take your children with you, make sure that they’re old enough to stay calm and avoid disrupting the hospital. Whether you take your children or not, be sure to dress appropriately. That means dressing in a formal way that shows respect, but it also means avoiding anything that can be dangerous in a hospital. In particular, ties are often banned because they can spread bacteria. Instead of wearing a tie, consider wearing one or two veteran lapel pins to appropriately accent your outfit.

Regardless of how you plan to show your appreciation, it’s important to make plans in advance. Be sure to decide on your schedule as soon as you can, and order any flags or pins that you need now to make sure they arrive on time.

A wide assortment of Veteran’s Day product can be found here: https://www.gettysburgflag.com/shop-by/veterans-day

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