For The Love of Veterans Day: A Tradition of Gratitude

Image of man holding American flag in honor of Veterans Day

Veterans Day here at Willow Point Resort

Image of soldier for Veterans Day appreciation blog

This Nov. 10 *, banks and businesses will close to observe Veterans Day. For some, the date will be observed by getting up late, relaxing, and simply being with family and friends. But for many countless others, Veterans Day has a much deeper meaning – and a legacy that carries on from generation to generation.

Here’s how Veterans Day got started, why it’s important, and what it means to each of us…every single day.

*NOTE: The official date of Veterans Day is Nov. 11. As that date falls on a Saturday this year, the 2017 observance date is Nov. 10.*

My husband Bryan Carpenter, feels he has a lot to be thankful for this Veterans Day.

A pilot, Bryan served in the United States Air Force for over 20 years.  He worked his way up and retired with the title of Colonel. During this time he and I, moved 16 times and made it through both rewarding and uncertain times, including a two-and-a-half year tour of duty in Vietnam. We raised two beautiful children (and today, have five grandchildren). Upon returning to civilian life, we opened and today own and manage this cabin rental business, Willow Point Resort.

Bryan’s success both at home and abroad have relied upon the same optimism and tireless commitment that brought him through two decades of service to his country. He is a testament to hard work and dedication. And he isn’t alone. More than 1.2 million currently active Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine and Coast Guard personnel (and 800,000 reserves) look forward to and hope for a similar future…yet unlike many of us, they realize a future of options and rights isn’t guaranteed, nor is it always free.

Why do we have Veterans Day? Whom does it honor and where did it all begin? And how can we show a soldier we know how much his or her service means to us, our children and our nation’s future? Here’s the story behind one of the most important dates you’ll ever celebrate, and how to spread a little awareness of your own.

A Nation Says ‘Thank You’

Before the beginning decades of the 20th century, though returning and fallen soldiers were often honored with parades and honors, there was only one single date of thanks to these veterans.

But following World War I, President Woodrow Wilson saw that there was a need for a recovering nation to gather. He initially called this date Armistice Day.

World War I (then known as “the Great War”) was ended with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles in 1919. But many considered the war unofficially over on Nov. 11, 1918, when a temporary cessation of hostilities was called between the Allied and Axis forces.

Moved and encouraged by the armistice, President Wilson named the date Armistice Day.

Memorial Day was already under observation (that holiday was announced in 1917), but Armistice Day included all who had served in the U.S’s military branches. A new date of honor and remembrance was born. In 1952, following World War II, the name was officially changed to Veterans Day, and we’ve been honoring the date ever since.

Bravery, Service, and a Day to Give Back

Veterans Day comes and goes each year with a number of us asking, “I’d like to say thank you – but how?”

Luckily, social media makes it easier than ever to spread the word of gratitude to former military. Want to make a difference to a soldier? Post a few words of gratitude to your social media wall. speak personally to people you know at work or around your neighborhood who have served, and express your gratitude in simple, honest terms.

Spreading awareness is simple, takes just minutes, and means so much!  It’s important in order to bring home the fact that our freedom and happiness is due in significant part to the efforts of those who have come before, and have faced challenges some of us may never know.

Looking for a way to show even more gratitude to a special soldier you know? Bring a vet to the lake for a quiet and relaxing getaway with us here at Willow Point! We are always honored to host those who have sacrificed so much on our behalf! It truly is a privilege for us.

Veterans Day isn’t just a day of solemnity. It’s a day of celebration. This Nov. 11/12, hug a vet you know…and say thank you. In this way, you’ll be part of a legacy that has helped us to stay strong, stay together, and be free.

We’d like to remind our readers that we offer current and former military a year-round 10% discount on their stay!


Image of Willow Point Resort owner, Bryan Carpenter, a retired lieutenant colonel from the United States Air Force. We offer a 10% discount to all active and retired military personnel year-round.
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  • Sincerely,
    – Gwen and Bryan Carpenter

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