December 1, 2020

Veteran’s Day Program in Franklin

(Franklin) — In honor of Veterans Day, the James Stewart Chapter  Daughters of the American Revolution will be holding a program on at the Veterans Monument in Franklin on Saturday November 14th at 11:00 am.

We invite the public to join us as we honor veterans past and present.

In case of inclement weather the program will be in the Heard County Library Conference room.

The James Stewart Chapter will hold its regular meeting prior to the program at 10 am at the Heard County Library.  After a short business meeting, members will move to Veterans Memorial Park for the Veterans program.

Celebrating Veterans on Veterans Day

happy-veterans-day-pictures2Veterans Day, November 11th, is the day set aside for us to pay tribute to our veterans. It gives us the opportunity to celebrate the bravery and sacrifice of all U.S. veterans.

While Memorial Day gives us a chance to remember the brave men and women who gave their lives in the service, Veterans Day gives us a chance to thank and honor living veterans who served honorably in the military – in wartime or peacetime.

Veterans Day was originally set as a U.S. legal holiday to honor the end of World War I, which officially took place on November 11, 1918.  In 1938, Congress passed legislation making November 11 a holiday, called Armistice Day, dedicated to the cause of world peace and honoring World War I veterans.

In 1954, after having been through both World War II and the Korean War, the 83rd U.S. Congress amended the Act of 1938 by striking out the word “Armistice” and inserting the word “Veterans” making Nov. 11 become a day to honor American veterans of all wars.

In 1968, Congress changed the date for Veterans Day to the last Monday in October as one of the three-day weekends for federal employees. Many states did not agree with this decision and continued to celebrate the holiday on its original date.

In 1975, President Gerald R. Ford signed a law which returned the annual observance of Veterans Day to its original date of November 11, beginning in 1978.

We almost all have veterans who are part of our lives – spouses, parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, teachers, friends, neighbors, and even actors and singers. Let me share some information about some veterans you might not know about.

We all know Mel Brooks from comedies such as “Space Balls,” “Blazing Saddles,” “Robots,” and “The Producers.” However, before he became a comedic director, he was a corporal in the U.S. Army. He enlisted at age 17, attended the Virginia Military Institute, served in World War II, fought in the Battle of the Bulge, and on occasion, defused landmines.

Elvis Presley served in the United States Army between March 1958 and March 1960. At the time of his draft he was one of the most well-known names in the world of entertainment. He entered the Army as a regular GI at Ft. Chaffee on March 24, 1958.

As his famously tousled hair was shaved down to regulation length, he cracked, “Hair today, gone tomorrow.” Elvis was stationed at Ft. Hood for Basic Training and was assigned to the Second Armored Division’s ‘Hell On Wheels’ unit. Later he was assigned to the Third Armored ‘Spearhead’ Division, and stationed in Friedberg, Germany.

Drafted in 1950, during the Korean War, Clint Eastwood was stationed at Fort Ord in California, where, thanks to his lifeguard training, he served as a swimming instructor. He saw the most action on leave: In 1951, a bomber he was in crashed in the ocean near Point Reyes. He and the pilot swam three miles to shore, a more-than-adequate prep for his role in Escape From Alcatraz.

Kris Kristofferson joined the U.S. Army and achieved the rank of Captain. He became a helicopter pilot and completed Ranger School. During the early 1960s, he was stationed in West Germany as a member of the 8th Infantry Division.

Aiming for a career in law enforcement, Chuck Norris joined the USAF security police, and while stationed in Korea, he realized one night on duty that he couldn’t arrest a rowdy drunk without pulling his weapon.

As a result, he started studying some of the local Korean martial arts, including Tang Soo Do and Tae Kwan Do, and became the first Westerner to be awarded an eighth-degree Black Belt in Tae Kwan Do. He held the world middleweight karate champion title for six years, and was named Black Belt magazine’s “Fighter of the Year” in 1969.

Originally known as Laurence Tureaud, Mr. T served in the Army’s Military Police Corps in the mid-70s. In November 1975 he was awarded a letter of recommendation by his drill sergeant, and in a cycle of six thousand troops he was elected “Top Trainee of the Cycle” and promoted to Squad Leader.

In July 1976 his platoon sergeant punished him by giving him the detail of chopping down trees during training camp at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin, but the sergeant did not specify how many trees that were to be cut down — so Tureaud single-handedly chopped down over 70 trees in the span of three and a half hours before being relieved of the detail.

Fresh out of high school in 1950, Johnny Cash joined the Air Force as the Korean War began, and spent most of his four-year enlistment in Germany. Perhaps not surprisingly for a man with music in his veins, Cash was handy when it came to the rhythms of Morse code, and served as an intercept operator with the USAF Security Service.

Born Alphonso D’Abruzzo in New York City on Jan. 28, 1936, Alan Alda joined the Army Reserve after graduating from Fordham. He completed the minimum six-month tour of duty as a gunnery officer during the Korean War.

After his discharge, Alda started acting in film and television. He is best remembered, of course, for his role as Hawkeye Pierce on “M*A*S*H.” Alda won five Emmy Awards on the show, including awards for acting, directing and writing. “M*A*S*H” became one of

Lee Marvin, the actor, was a genuine hero. He was in the Marine Corps during World War II where he received a Purple Heart for wounds received during the battle for Saipan.

Montel Williams has a distinguished military career. He enlisted in the U.S. Marines upon graduating high school in 1974.  He was accepted to the Naval Academy Preparatory school. He completed their one-year course, and was accepted to the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis.

When he arrived at Annapolis in1976, he was honorably discharged as a corporal from the Marines, and enlisted into the navy as a midshipman. Williams graduated from Annapolis in 1980, becoming the first African American enlisted marine to complete and graduate both the Academy Prep School and Annapolis.

Williams spent the following year and a half in Guam and another year in the Defense Language Institute studying Russian. He spent the next three years aboard submarines becoming a full lieutenant. Then he was made supervising cryptologic officer with the Naval Security Fleet Support Division at Ft. Meade. Some years later he gave up his naval career to become a full-time motivational speaker.

Randy Couture, the “Expendables” star served in the U.S. Army from 1982-88. Couture moved through the rank to become a Sergeant in the 101st Airborne.

Mel Brooks was drafted into the Army to fight during World War II. He served as a corporal in the 1104 Engineer Combat Battalion, 78th Infantry Division as a combat engineer. Brooks didn’t have the easiest job in the military, as he was tasked with diffusing land minds.

The famed Hollywood superstar also fought in the Battle of the Bulge. Given his legendary humor, it shouldn’t surprise his fans to learn that as the Germans played propaganda recordings over loudspeakers, Brooks responded by setting up his own sound system and played music by Al Jolson, a Jewish musician.

After graduating from the Naval Academy, Roger Staubach turned down a cushy job at home to serve as a supply officer in Vietnam. Staubach joined the Dallas Cowboys at the age of 27. Staubach needs to be credited with his athletic accomplishments, but, needless to say, he was as tough on the field as he was off of it.

Ted Williams, the Splendid Splinter, spent five years as a pilot and flight instructor during both WWII and Korea, many of those years were during the prime of his baseball career with the Red Sox.

Williams went down in history as perhaps the greatest hitter in the game, and those years spent serving his country are met with appreciation and the question of what he would have been capable of had he not bravely served his country in two wars.

No one can accuse Jackie Robinson of not being dynamic. Robinson demonstrated the bravery required to stand up to and break baseball’s color barrier when he was a rookie for the Dodgers, a feat that may or may not have been rivaled by serving as a Lieutenant during WWII, having trained with the first black tank battalion to serve in combat.

This information and more can be found online, but only you can actually hug a veteran, say “Thanks for serving” or “I appreciate what you have done for our country.”

Just a few words from one person can mean so much to these brave men and women who gave part of their lives to the service of our country. On this, their special day, take time to honor the veterans in your lives. Tell them you appreciate their service. (Photo:

Submitted by Carla Brown

James Stewart Chapter NSDAR

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