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All across America, May is time for military appreciation

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Composite image of an American flag and military service seals.

Besides the two most recognizable days we celebrate in May, Mother’s Day and Memorial Day, there are two more very important days: Military Spouse Appreciation Day and Armed Forces Day.

Armed Forces Day is celebrated the third Saturday in May which is May 19 this year.  It is a day to recognize members of the Armed Forces who are currently serving. 

President Harry Truman led the efforts to have a holiday for people to thank the members of the military who serve to support and protect this country.

On August 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of Armed Forces Day after the consolidation of the branches of the military to one department.

The first celebration of Armed Forces Day was held on May 20, 1950.  Each year has a different theme attached to the day.  The first one was “Teamed For Defense” and this year is “All Across America.”

Military Spouse Appreciation Day is celebrated the Friday before Mother’s Day which is May 11 this year.  It is a perfect day to honor the contributions and sacrifices made by military spouses.

Military spouses are the silent heroes who are very important to all of us.  They serve our country just like their loved ones.

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan presented a Proclamation to have the importance of spouses be recognized.  In 1999, the date was set as the Friday before Mother’s Day. 

As of September 2017, there were 1.3 million active duty troops and another 865,000 in reserve.

Think about what these amazing people are giving for us. Take a moment or two and thank them for their service.