In the U.S., we observe Veterans Day on November 11, as does France, Great Britain, Australia and Canada, in one form or another.
In England, the country observes two minutes of silence at 11 a.m. on November 11.
In Camden, like in other communities across the U.S., American Legion Post 30 will stand silently at the Wall on the Village Green to honor all veterans at 11:45 a.m., and the public is invited to join.
It is a collective observance, and a time to honor all veterans. The annual recognition was originally known as Armistice Day, commemorating that day when fighting ceased between the Allied nations and Germany at the end of World War I, “the war to end all wars.”
This annual legacy has had its own bumps in the road, including several years when Washington, D.C., tried to move it on the calendar (public will restored it to its natural origin). Today, Veterans Day is observed on November 11, regardless of what day of the week on which it falls, when the public stops business for a time and honors America's veterans for their patriotism, love of country, and willingness to serve and sacrifice for the common good.
A famous poem grew from the trenches of World War I — “In Flanders Fields,” by brigade doctor John McCrae.
He wrote it in May 1915, following the death of Canadian artillery officer, Lieutenant Alexis Helmer. The poppy has since become a symbol of hope and remembrance.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.
George Hardt took these photos at Togus VA Center, in Augusta.