1. Archive

It's better to educate on Veterans Day

Editor: I, speaking only for myself, must agree with your reasoning re: days off for schoolchildren on Veterans Day, Nov. 11, vs. using that day to educate the children about the meaning of that day and why it was necessary to have a Veterans Day.

This past Nov. 11, I and Nicholas Canatta, commander of VFW Post 2845 in Hudson, had the opportunity to address two classes each at Hudson Elementary School (in the fifth grade, I think) and tell them what Veterans Day meant to us, and why we "fought in the war." After leaving, Nick and I were dismayed regarding the "little" knowledge that our young students had of history! History of the United States!

Outside of hearing some "war stories" from fathers, uncles and a lot of grandfathers, very few were aware of Hitler, Mussolini, Tojo! Of the great sacrifices made by our countrymen in the Pacific, Atlantic, North and Mediterranean seas! Knew of the African, Middle East, European campaigns! Had heard of the South Pacific and the miniwars occurring there . . . Tarawa, the Marianna Islands or the Ardennes Forest or the drive to the Elbe River! The Bataan Death March? The Holocaust? The Nazis or the Italian Brown Shirts? Imaginative stories by a few old men? "Man, that's just not cool!" Korea? Forget about it! Vietnam? "Hey, I had a cousin in that! Got all messed up with drugs and is really spaced out!"

I know Bob Achu, and know him to be a proud pro-veteran, as he has every right to be, and (Bob, if you're reading this, get ready!) for once I must agree with the editor, if only in this case. Our grandkids need the education in history as much as we veterans need to be remembered! After all, don't the two go hand in hand? Knowledge of history will ensure that all America's veterans, from the Revolutionary War to the Spanish-American War, World War I and World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Grenada, Panama Canal, Desert Storm, Somalia and Bosnia-Herzegovina, WE WILL BE REMEMBERED!

John F. Doran, Holiday