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Military Appreciation Month
By AlphaNews
5/1/2015 9:25:00 AM

Appreciation for the U.S. military and recognition of soldiers’ service and sacrifice is something that is in our DNA. After all we were founded with the mission of providing the U.S. Armed Forces with protective clothing of superior quality that delivered outstanding defense against extreme climate conditions. From our start in October 1959, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) awarded Alpha contracts to produce jackets for American service members and went on to award them for several decades. Alpha is proud to honor the courage, service and immense sacrifice demonstrated by the men, women and families of our armed forces. Please join us as we share interesting facts, videos and websites throughout the month that showcase the extraordinary achievements and milestones of the U.S. military.

Military Appreciation Month became official in April 2004 when legislation was passed by both the Senate and House of the U.S. Congress. It was five years earlier that the idea for such a month was first introduced by Senator John McCain and Representative Duncan Hunter along with over 50 veteran service organizations. The purpose of the month is to honor, remember, recognize and appreciate all military personnel including those who have died in the pursuit of freedom and peace. The month of May was selected because it has the most days set aside for celebrating and commemorating our military achievements.

Loyalty Day (May 1)
This observance is a day for citizens of the U.S. to reaffirm their love and loyalty to the country. A day of patriotism to be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy. The resolution for “Americanization Day” was adopted in 1949 and events began in 1950 when on May 1 more than 100,000 people gathered in New York City to rally for America. Congress officially designated and renamed it Loyalty Day in 1958.

Victory in Europe Day (May 8)
Also known as VE Day, this day celebrates the victory of the Allies of WWII in 1945. It was on this day that Nazi Germany unconditionally surrendered its armed forces and signed documents ending the war. This year marks the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII and is an event celebrated around the world.

Military Spouse Appreciation (May 8)
Celebrated on the Friday before Mother’s Day, it is a day that we recognize the strength and sacrifice of U.S. military spouses who not only support their loved one during their deployment but keep the family at home going so that their loved one can serve without worry. It was recognized by President Reagan in 1984 and officially made a part of Military Appreciation Month in 1999.

Children of Fallen Patriots Day (May 13)
While only signed by mayors of a few cities, this day is a new observance. It is a time to think about those left behind when a serviceman is killed, especially their children. The Fallen Patriots organization works to raise money to help these families send their kids to college now that they have lost a parent.

Armed Forces Week and Day (May 10-16; May 16 being Armed Forces Day)
Armed Forces Week and Day are times to pay tribute to those Americans in uniform who serve their country in times of war and peace. It recognizes those who are in the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and Coast Guard. The day was created in 1949 by the Secretary of Defense when all the branches of the military were brought under one government department and first celebrated in 1950. Armed Forces Day started as a day for the military to show off their “state-of-the-art” equipment to Americans but today is celebrated with parades, ceremonies, air shows, etc.

Memorial Day (May 25)
Memorial Day is a U.S. holiday that commemorates the men and women who died while serving in our military. It was originally known as Decoration Day and dates back to the American Civil War. On this day, many people visit the grave sites of loved ones who have been lost and military cemeteries such as Arlington National Cemetery have special services for fallen servicemen.

Tags: Military Appreciation Month, Memorial Day, Victory in Europe, US Armed Forces, Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines
Categories: Holidays
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