BOSTON (WWLP) – Veterans and those who lost their lives in battle are honored at the State House everyday in Memorial Hall, but Veterans Day celebrations brought dozens of veterans into the building. The celebration also included international guests from the United State’s allied Countries, and a ceremony was performed to honor those still missing in action and for prisoners of war.
The holiday of November 11 began after World War I, as fighting ceased when an armistice went into effect of the 11th hour, of the 11th day of the eleven month in 1918. In 1919, President Wilson officially proclaimed November 11th as Armistice Day. In 1954, after World War II, Armistice Day became Veterans Day, to honor those who served our country from every war.
Keynote speaker, George W. Casey, a retired Army General, spoke at the State House about how incredible veterans truly are.
“How lucky we are as a country to have had generation after generation of Americans who believe so strongly in the values and ideals that this country stands for, that they’re willing to put their lives on the line to secure them. Those are the men and women we honor every Veteran’s Day.” said Casey.
Speakers from the Department of Veteran Services, the Army, the National Guard, and the Korean War veteran association were featured at the event. Governor Charlie Baker was also in attendance and talked about the importance of service and sacrifice.
“I think a lot about them, especially those we’ve lost every time I step in this building. They gave up not just their life, but the life they would have lived if they hadn’t died in combat,” said Baker.
The newly created Medal of Fidelity, which was a part of the SPEED Act, was presented to three individuals who lost their loved ones due to illness related to war.
The event wrapped up with a musical salute to each branch of the military.