Please join Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 8616, recent veterans from the U.S. Vets housing and work re-entry programs, the Honolulu Elks Lodge 616 and the Friends of the Natatorium for the VFW’s 15th annual Veterans Day wreath laying and commemoration.
The observance will take place at the Waikiki War Memorial Natatorium this Friday, Nov. 11, at 11 a.m. That’s the famous “11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month,” the date and time that the armistice ending World War I went into effect 93 years ago.
Nov. 11 has been solemnly observed in the United States ever since, first as Armistice Day and from 1954 on as Veterans Day, an observance honoring all veterans of U.S, military service.
The Natatorium is a particularly appropriate place for a Veterans Day ceremony. It has been, since it opened in 1927, Hawai’i’s official memorial to more than 10,000 volunteers from here who served in the Great War.
Friday’s ceremony will include flower, lei and wreath laying and brief remarks honoring the service of U.S. soldiers, sailors, marines, airmen and coast guards throughout the nation’s history, with special attention to those from Hawai’i. A U.S. Marine bugler will play Taps in memory of the nation’s war dead.
Members of the public are invited to attend and participate. If you cannot be there at 11 a.m., stop by the Natatorium [map and directions here] at any time on Nov. 11. Leave lei or flowers, or just spend a few moments in reflection in honor of Veterans Day and the veterans from Hawai’i to whom the memorial is dedicated.
Wherever you are this Friday, mahalo for offering your respect and appreciation to our nation’s veterans.