Today is Veterans Day, a day set aside to honor all men and women who served and are serving our country wearing the uniform of our Armed Forces. Originally called Armistice Day, when the Armistice was signed with Germany ending World War I. It became an official holiday in 1938 and in 1954 President Dwight Eisenhower signed a bill recognizing the day as Veterans Day.
For many years the observance included a pause at 11 am on November 11 marking the time the armistice was signed with Germany.
Morrow County’s men and women have served faithfully in all conflicts. Although it was only men who wore uniforms in early conflicts, women have and are serving in all branches since World War I.
Many of these men and women have paid the ultimate sacrifice – walking through Cardington’s Glendale Cemetery one will find monuments marking the graves of those who served in the American Revolution, the War of 1812, the Mexican War, the Civil War, the Indian Wars, Spanish American War; World War I; World War II, the Korean Conflict, and Vietnam. There is even the grave of one who served in the Revolutionary War and one Confederate. Others have served in the Gulf War, Desert Storm, and more recently Iraq and Afghanistan.
I have the names of 1,341 Morrow County citizens who served during World War II, the era of the “greatest generation.” Fifty of these citizens were killed during their service time. Twenty four Morrow County residents lost their lives in World War I; six in Korea and five in Viet Nam. The monument in Glendale Cemetery bears the names of over 200 Cardington area residents who served in the Civil War.
My apologies for not having a record of Morrow County residents who lost their lives in the more recent conflicts.
I am humble in recognizing these valiant people who took the time in their lives to serve – not knowing whether during their term, they would be called to active service. I also remember my father who longed to serve – and in 1917, during World War I, he turned 14 and went to the recruiting center in Cincinnati to sign up for the service. Alas, they told him to go home and grow up – by that time the war was over. I imagine there were many more whose sense of duty overpowered their youthful ages.
Veterans Day is observed around Morrow County with the largest tribute being held in Mount Gilead. Carrying out these tributes are the county’s veterans organizations, American Legion Posts 710 Marengo; 97 Cardington 754 Johnsville; VFW Post 8054 and AMVETS Post 87.
Thanks – to each of you who have worn and are wearing a uniform of our Armed Forces while serving to protect each one of us.