Nov. 11, the United States will celebrate Veterans Day to honor those who have served their country in any military capacity. Originally proclaimed as Armistice Day by President Woodrow Wilson in 1919, the day is also celebrated in other countries by that name, or as Remembrance Day. It should be noted that the holiday was created to honor World War I veterans and the last remaining U.S. WWI veteran passed away this year.
As a veteran who has served overseas in an armed conflict, I know the sacrifices that military members make. Based on that knowledge, I have been involved in the passage of several bills benefitting veterans and the military as a senator. As a member of the House, I sponsored a bill to exempt military pensions from the state income tax. As the vice chair of the Missouri Military Preparedness and Enhancement Commission, I will continue to look for ways to make sure Missouri is veteran- and military-friendly.
We have not always treated our veterans and military members as well as we should have. Vietnam-era veterans were an unfortunate example. Even some returning members of more recent conflicts have been ignored or left behind, as physical and mental health issues continue to rise greatly from those conflicts. I was particularly dismayed to hear of the booing at the National Guard enlistment ceremony at the Missouri-Tennessee game. Whatever the reason for the booing, it was inappropriate and must have impacted our new Guardsmen negatively.
The good news is that, overall, I see a much more respectful attitude toward our veterans. I hear more people thanking those in uniform, and those they know have served. As we celebrate next Monday, I urge you to seek out the veterans you know, whether in person, phone call or even text, to thank them for their service.
Veterans Day Celebrations
I will attend several Veterans Day events on Monday to help honor local veterans and educate some children about history.
8:00 a.m. – Lee’s Summit Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #5789 will hold a ceremony to honor local veterans. The post is located at 329 SE Douglas in downtown Lee’s Summit.
11:00 a.m. – The VFW will host a veterans’ event at John Knox Village.
2:00 p.m. – Members of the VFW will visit Richardson Elementary to discuss Veterans Day with 6th graders in the school library.
In addition to these events, I will continue my tradition of visiting Hy-Vee supermarkets in Lee’s Summit and Blue Springs to meet with veterans and pass out helpful information. Hy-Vee is one of several companies offering specials for veterans on Monday.
Veterans Day Deals
These restaurants and retail establishments offer free meals, discounts or other specials for veterans on Veterans Day at participating locations. Please contact local establishments to see what they offer. Even if you are not a veteran, please consider visiting these establishments anyway to thank them for their support.
California Pizza Kitchen
Einstein Bros. Bagels
On the Border
Of course, several retail establishments and restaurants have a military discount every day. I thank them and personally prefer to patronize them, as well.
State Senator Will Kraus-R serves District Eight and is a resident of Lees Summit.