At the end of World War I in 1918, agreements were made and a peace treaty was signed. The day and time was recorded and labeled "Armistice Day." Many years later, Armistice Day became Veterans Day and was referred to as 11-11-11. The peace was signed the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, establishing the time every year that we remember all of those American veterans who gave their all defending our country's values and freedoms.
Many years after World War I, we find our country engaged in a new type of war: unexpected attacks by terrorists.
Sept. 11, 2001, became a day that will live in infamy, just as Dec, 7, 1941, the day Pearl Harbor was attacked, did. The terrorist attack on America brought down the World Trade Center and caused great damage and loss of life in the Pentagon. Our military came on the sites of destruction and catastrophe along with the top of our first response teams: our heroic fire departments and police departments. Together, these protective forces battled the infernos of burning fuel and melting debris while saving as many lives as they could.
Veterans Day is the traditional time we pay our respects to our military veterans who have saved our nation from the onslaught of foreign aggressors. This year, let's also remember our first response veterans -- our nation's police and fire departments who gave their lives giving the condemned persons in the crumbling World Trade Center and the incinerating Pentagon a chance to live.
Our nation's military and first response teams have shown our people the power of teamwork and determination to save the innocent from life-threatening harm. Teamwork in America has brought us together for whatever objective we need to accomplish. God has seen this nation retain its freedom and values for more than 200 years.
Praise God. God bless America.
Herb Stettler is the service officer for the Soldotna Veterans of Foreign War Post No. 10046.
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