Armed Forces Day is meant to salute the services of the US military people whose services are ongoing. noted that on Aug. 31, 1949, Defense Secretary Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy, and Air Force Days. The single-day celebration stemmed from the unification of the armed forces under one agency -- the Department of Defense.

In a speech announcing the creation of the day, President Truman "praised the work of the military services at home and across the seas." He said, "It is vital to the security of the nation and to the establishment of a desirable peace."

In an excerpt from the Presidential Proclamation of Feb. 27, 1950, Truman stated: "Armed Forces Day, Saturday, May 20, 1950, marks the first combined demonstration by America's defense team of its progress, under the National Security Act, toward the goal of readiness for any eventuality. It is the first parade of preparedness by the unified forces of our land, sea, and air defense."

Each year, Armed Forces Day has a new theme. The very first theme was "Teamed for Defense." Other themes have included Appreciation of a Nation; Arsenal of Freedom and Democracy; Dedication and Devotion; Deter if Possible, Fight if Necessary; Freedom; Freedom Through Unity; Guardians of Peace; Lasting Peace; Liberty; and Patriotism.

On May 20, 1950 Armed Forces Day celebrations included parades, receptions, air shows plus a parade held in New York City, a 10,000 troop and veterans march in Washington, DC, plus B-36 Bomber fly overs over the capitals of every state. Each an excellent tribute to those serving.

All men and women now on active-duty have earned the respect of the citizenry and the Sons of AMVETS join a grateful nation in extending our appreciation for their dedication and commitment to the ideals of democracy, freedom, and liberty. THANK YOU all and your families for your service.

May God Bless you and the United States of America.

With warmest regards.

Richard H. Thibodeau - Commander

National Sons of AMVETS