Veterans Day

Breathe in that fresh air, Greenwich. You know what it means, the election is finally over and we can move on as a community toward other matters … like Veterans Day.

This is where Greenwich always shines, with two events set for Tuesday morning. First there is the march down Greenwich Avenue starting at 10 a.m., put together by the Greenwich Military Covenant of Care. This now-annual event will go down the avenue until it reaches the town’s War Memorial right outside Restoration Hardware and will spotlight how we, as a community, can show veterans what they mean to us.

This will lead perfectly to the town’s annual Veterans Day ceremony outside the memorial at precisely 11 a.m., making good on the promise of Nov. 11 to have the day on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month. Led, ably as always, by former marine Christopher Hughes, commander of American Legion Post 29, this is an excellent chance to show patriotic spirit as the work of veterans is highlighted and deserving Greenwich youth are honored for their work as young Americans.

If you missed the first community walk when it debuted last year, you missed an inspiring sight. The Greenwich Military Covenant of Care has been in existence for years, doing a lot of work behind the scenes to support the families of active duty military personnel, and they’ve made sure to welcome home Greenwich’s veterans in style. But last year was the first time they took that support to the streets.

It’s good to see just how much this event has taken hold in one year, and it’s our hope that it becomes an annual event where veterans walk or drive down Greenwich Avenue cheered on by residents just looking to say thank you. The event is so effective in its simplicity and it deserves the community’s full support, especially as it leads right down to the annual ceremony outside the memorial.

While Memorial Day is the opportunity to remember those veterans who paid the ultimate sacrifice, Veterans Day is meant to be a celebration and a tribute for all that veterans do. It’s easy for us to take service for granted, especially with so many families that have not served in the military. Patriotism and military service are too often used as cheap political props, so it’s refreshing after the election season to see people like Chris Hughes and Bruce Winningham and everyone in the Covenant of Care do so much for selfless reasons.

It’s disappointing that this year Greenwich’s public schools will be in session on Veterans Day, even if the reason is understandable because of calendar concerns and the fact that many treated it simply as a day off. How many kids stayed home on Veterans Day and played Call of Duty all day, thinking that was what military service was all about? It’s good that they’ll be getting a day of education about veterans and all they do, but a field trip to these events would be even better, as both the Covenant and the American Legion have worked hard to make sure Greenwich youths are involved as much as possible in their efforts.

Veterans Day is Tuesday, Nov. 11, and there won’t be a better way to enjoy the fresh start of a post-election Greenwich than by turning out in force for these events. Our veterans have done so much to support us. The least we can do is come out and say thank you.

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