How can we honor our Active Military and Veterans this Veteran’s Day?
Gary Jaffarian shares ongoing signs of appreciation and local events to express your gratitude this Veterans Day and throughout the year.
Veterans Day is this Friday, November 11th. A special day to honor all veterans—alive or dead—as well as active military. The day marks the anniversary of the November 11, 1918 signing of the Armistice, the agreement to end the fighting during World War I, once called the “war to end all wars” and was originally called Armistice Day.
This is a day of ceremonies, parades, discounts, free meals, and special events to honor our nearly 20 million U.S. veterans with 380,000 in Massachusetts. It is a special day to say “thank you” to the veterans you know or see that day and a special day to visit the cemetery to place wreaths or flowers and flags on the graves of veterans. While it is well-deserved to have a day to recognize our veterans and active military, wouldn’t it be great if we could extend that one day of thanks throughout the year including random acts of kindness and ongoing recognition of their service to our country? Simple acts of recognition and gratitude can go a long way including remembering our senior citizen veterans as well as those who have recently come home battling physical and emotional scars from their service.
Ways to Honor Our Veteran’s on Veteran’s Day: Parades will be held in Haverhill, Boston and Lexington and special events in many cities and towns.
• Bring a veteran to one of the restaurants offering free meals or specials. Check out the list on http://themilitarywallet.com/veterans-day-free-meals-and-discounts or http://militarybenefits.info/veterans-day-discounts-sales-deals-free-meals.
• If you can get into Boston, there is a parade and many special events for veterans. For more information, go to http://www.boston-discovery-guide.com/veterans-day.html.
• Andover Veterans Day Ceremonies, 10 a.m. at West Parish Cemetery, 129 Reservation Road, Andover; 11 a.m. at Spring Grove Cemetery, 124 Abbot St., Andover; noon at Ballardvale Green, at the intersection of Andover and Center Streets, presented by Andover Veterans’ Services, a division of the Department of Community Services. A light lunch will be held at 1 p.m. at the Masonic Temple, 7 High Street. The program will be held rain or shine. In case of moderate to heavy rain, a brief ceremony will be held at Elm Green at noon and inside the Masonic Temple. For more information, call 978-623-8218.
• Haverhill’s annual Veterans Day Parade, 10 a.m. on Kenoza Avenue, in front of the VFW Post 29. The parade will start at 10:30 a.m. and will proceed to Monument Square, down Main Street to the Global Peace Monument on Ginty Boulevard, where services will be held. At the conclusion of the services, the colors will be retired. A buffet luncheon will be held at the American Legion Farm, 1314 Main St., following the parade.
• Veterans Day Observance, 11 a.m. to noon in the Hampstead Middle School cafeteria, 28 School St. The program will consist of patriotic songs and music, the Air Force Junior ROTC Color Guard, special presentations and awards, and conclude with a wreath laying ceremony at the Veterans Memorial Park (in front of Town Offices). For more information, call 603-329-4288.
Ideas to extend the gratitude beyond one day:
• Seek out the veterans you know, especially seniors, to honor them with a card, flag or plant.
• Thank you. Whenever you are out and see active military or people who have served, thank them for their service.
• Listen to their stories. If they don’t want to discuss the war, listen to their history, what motivated them to serve, or how they met their spouse. Seniors love to tell stories and have someone value them just by listening with interest. If they want to discuss the war, show medals or photos, that is an added bonus!
• Bring a veteran to a local ceremony or event that honors veterans.
• Offer a ride to a veteran to a medical appointment, the drug store, the cemetery or market.
• Surprise a veteran neighbor with a random act of kindness. Buy their cup of coffee or rake their leaves..
• “Greenlight A Vet” by changing your outside light to green to honor America’s veterans-some of our nation’s bravest, hardest-working men and women. However, it’s hard to show them the appreciation they deserve when, back home and out of uniform, they’re more camouflaged than ever. Greenlight A Vet is a campaign to establish visible national support for our veterans by changing one light to green.
• There are many charities and opportunities throughout the year to help with financial assistance or participate in local activities that benefit our veterans. There are too many to list, but be on the lookout for road races, walks, and many organizations seeking to help our veterans.
At Jaffarian Volvo Toyota, we are proud to represent Toyota, the largest vehicle manufacturer in the U.S. Toyota honors our veterans as they say:
“For everything you give, we want to give something back. Inspired by your courage and commitment, we are offering a $750 rebate to eligible U.S. military personnel. This rebate can be used toward any new Toyota vehicle purchased through your dealer and Toyota Financial Services. Because the sacrifices don’t stop at the front lines we are also extending our Military Rebate offer to household members of eligible U.S. military personnel, including Gold Star families.”
Jaffarian Toyota is participating in this program so if you are in the market for a vehicle, we would be honored to help you find the right Toyota for you.
The Toyota Military Rebate offer is available to:
• U.S. military personnel
• Household members of eligible U.S. military personnel (including Gold Star families)
• U.S. military retirees (within 1 year of retirement)
• U.S. military veterans (within 1 year of discharge).
On behalf of all of us at Jaffarian Volvo Toyota, we salute our veterans and our active military and are so grateful for the sacrifices made to protect our freedom. May we all seek ways to honor them on Friday but find ways to honor and thank them throughout the year.