USS Harry S. Truman, At Sea (NNS) -- Sailors and Marines aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) reflected on the sacrifices of service members, past and present, while deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom Nov. 11.
After almost six months of separation from friends and family while on deployment in the 5th and 6th fleet areas of responsibility, Veterans Day has taken a special meaning for many crew members.
"Veterans Day to me means sacrifice, commitment and freedom," said Senior Chief Damage Controlman (SW/AW) Isom West. "A lot of service members died for us, and the freedom of America. Many things would not be possible today if it wasn't for our military heroes."
President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice "Remembrance" Day on Nov. 11, 1919, to honor those who had fought and served during World War I.
Congress passed a concurrent resolution June 4, 1926, requesting another proclamation to observe Nov. 11 with appropriate ceremonies. In 1954 during Dwight D. Eisenhower's term as president, Congress replaced "Armistice" Day with the name "Veterans Day", to celebrate all those who had served and are currently serving in the United States military.
"My grandfather encouraged and inspired me to join the Navy," said Aviation Boatswain's Mate (Handling) 3rd Class Brian Case, who also has a brother serving on board the USS Dwight Eisenhower (CVN 69). "He served his time and would enlighten my brother and me with stories of military life. I have a tattoo of his name, my brother's name, and my dog tags on my arm. I am proud to serve."
"Veterans Day is a very important holiday," said Sgt. Rene Cruzhernandez. "It allows us, as service members, to remember those who served before us. If it wasn't for them we wouldn't be here today. I serve to fight for freedom and create a better future for my family. Serving in the Marine Corps means a lot to me; it is a brotherhood that cannot be broken."
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