Dating back to the early 20th century, this honorable holiday is one of the most reverent days in the United States. Veterans Day is especially important now, due to the declining number of living veterans from World War I. Many Americans have grandparents who remember the end of the Great War, but few have great grandparents who were actually old enough to serve in the war.
Although the holiday originated for World War I, it is now celebrated to include all veterans of wars, conflicts and active duty service. In the United States, the armed service community is very tight, and the army, navy, air force, National Guard and reserves of the US have been very important in shaping the country as well as the entire world.
Facts about veterans
Number: There are nearly 22M living US veterans
When they served: 16.5M are wartime veterans, 5.5M peacetime
Wars: Gulf and later – 7M; Vietnam – 7.2M, Korea – 1.9M, WWII – 1M
Gender: 20M men and 2M women
Age: Under 50 – 28%, 50-64 – 27%, 65 and older – 45%
Branch: Army – 9.2M, Navy – 4.8M, Air Force – 4M, Marines – 2.3M