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Pride, service, and honor: Veterans Day

A day of celebration for those who served our country, Veterans Day is commemorated November 11. CCRC celebrates the dedication and sacrifices of our nation’s veterans.

CCRC is proud to have 10 veterans on our staff. CCRC Vice President Roger Gagnon spent 24 years in the US Air Force with 13 years as an aircraft maintenance and structural repair manager and 11 years as a senior information technology officer. “Growing up, I loved airplanes and what got me hooked is I went to an Edwards Air Force Base air show and I realized I wanted to go into the Air Force. At the age of 18 and just out of high school, I enlisted, went to training, and my military journey began.”

Roger says on Veterans Day, he and his fellow veteran friends and family call and check in on each other. One way he says others can honor veterans is a simple “Thank you.” “If you know someone who served in military, simply tell them ‘Thank you for your service and your sacrifices.'”

Genevieve Aparicio, a professional development coach, served for eight years as a radioman for the U.S. Navy. She comes from a long line of service members and says the skills she learned in the service transfer to her role as a child development specialist.

“Serving in the military is basically the same kind of focus because you’re working to protect your country and people who live in the country,” she explained. “I’ve always helped. With CCRC, people want to become licensed and learn more child care development, so it’s some of the same skills, still helping people.”

Every year on Veteran’s Day, Genevieve goes to see the gravesites of veterans in her family. She said she takes extra flags and flowers to place on graves that haven’t been visited. “If you see a veteran walking down the street, shake their hand and tell them thank you for their service,” she says.

An annual ceremony commences at Arlington National Cemetery in Washington D.C. with a wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns and continues inside the Memorial Amphitheater with a parade of colors by Veterans’ organizations and remarks from dignitaries. The ceremony is intended to honor and thank all who served in the United States Armed Forces. A live stream can be viewed online.

The history of Veterans Day began in 1919 with President Woodrow Wilson’s proclamation of Armistice Day, to be “filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country’s service and with gratitude for the victory.” When Congress changed the date of observance to the fourth Monday in October, starting in 1971, the public urged a return to the original date. In 1975, President Ford signed legislation authorizing the change. The original concept for the celebration was for a day observed with parades and public meetings and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m. Read the full timeline here.

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