Veterans Day honors the millions of men and women who serve or have served in the nation’s military.
This is particularly important this year because on April 6, 1917, the United States entered World War I to support its allies as they waged war against Germany. Ceremonies across the United States in April, including one at the Northern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery in Fernley, marked the centennial of this country’s entrance.
First called Armistice Day because of an agreement to end the fighting on the Western Front, the day formally marked the end of World War I at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918. The United States rename Nov. 11 as Veterans Day in 1954.
Two area parades will honor veterans on Saturday.
The Reno Veterans Day parade begins with a ceremony at the Virginia Street Bridge at 11:11 a.m., and afterward, the parade moves north through the heart of city beginning at 11:20 a.m. and last about two hours.
This year’s grand marshal is Brig. Gen. Zachary Doser, commander of the Army Guard for Nevada. The parade features marching bands, area Junior ROTC units, military organizations and a strong presence from the Nevada National Guard.
The annual Virginia City Veterans Day Parade is also Saturday, beginning at 11 a.m. The parade includes many veterans’ organizations, bands, vehicles, mounted horse individuals and groups, Junior ROTC and local residents showing their patriotism. Along the parade route on C Street are banners honoring Virginia City residents who answered the call and served or are still serving in the military.
Fallon will have several events. Highland Village at 570 N. Sherman St., will honor veterans and their spouses and also have a roll call to honor veterans who have died.
The ceremony begins at 2 p.m. with. Presentation of colors and honors to the flag. At 2:30, recognition for veterans and spouses begins followed by a roll call. A reception ends the one-hour presentation at 3 p.m.
The Fallon Elks Lodge on 90 W. Center St., also recognizes veterans with a dinner, recognition of veterans and a guest speaker that begins at 6 p.m. For information, call the Fallon Elks Lodge at 775-423-2239.
Both the Lahontan Valley News/Nevada Appeal will provide an up-close view of veterans this weekend as Steve Ranson, editor emeritus of the LVN and current military writer for both newspapers, is accompanying Honor Flight Nevada to Washington, D.C., this weekend. He will chronicle the visit of Vietnam veterans to many of the nation’s monuments and memorials and write articles of their experiences as travelers and also as military men and women during that era.
Today is the official holiday. Federal, state and local offices and schools are closed. Naval Air Station is on its holiday schedule. Check with your financial institutions to check on their status.