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Veterans Day serves to honor those who serve

Victor Kottinger proudly wears his veterans hoodie. On the back, it states,

Hanalei Pham

Victor Kottinger proudly wears his veterans hoodie. On the back, it states, "I am a veteran. My oath of enlistment has no expiration date," displaying his commitment to the country.

Hanalei Pham, Staff Writer

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Nov. 11 marks Veterans Day, a day to commemorate all those who have served or are serving in the military. As part of Veterans Day, students are given the day off school.

Sophomore Jonah Przybyszewski said, “Though I won’t be doing much over Veterans Day as I am not close with anyone who has served, I feel that Veterans Day is an important time to remember all the soldiers who have served and recognize their sacrifice.”

For students and teachers alike, Veterans Day serves as a breather and a welcome break.

Sophomore Anna Singer said, “I will be using the day to think about my relatives, as both my grandpas served in the military. They did not perish in the war, but aren’t around now. However, more than anything, I’m happy we don’t have class. It’s really nice to get a day off.”

The purpose of Veterans Day has changed over time.  Originally known as Armistice Day, Nov. 11 marked the end of World War I. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs website, on May 13, 1938, Armistice Day was made a legal holiday “dedicated to the cause of world peace” and in remembrance of World War I.

After World War II saw the greatest mobilization of American troops in the history of the nation, Armistice Day was renamed Veterans Day in 1954. It became a day to “honor American veterans of all wars,” according to the Veterans Affairs website.

History teacher Greg Schoenstein, who served in the army from 1993 to 1999, said, “It is good to have a day to call attention to the sacrifices the soldiers made so that we can enjoy the life we have. Especially for the young, it is a time to reflect that freedom wasn’t free.”

For veterans, Veterans Day can be an emotional time to reflect on their time in the military and the lives lost to war.

Janitor Victor Kottinger served in the Air Force from 1969 to 1971 during the Vietnam War. Stationed in Guam, he was part of the Air Police, which helped protect the planes. On Veterans Day, Kottinger will be attending a Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) meeting to share memories and tell stories of their experiences.

Kottinger said, “War is terrible, but when the country calls, you go. I lost both my uncles to the second World War; I never knew them. Serving is about duty and honor. Lots didn’t come home from the war. It’s sad; we were all like brothers. When you see a veteran, go up to them and thank them for their service to the country.”

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The student news site of Carlmont High School in Belmont, California.
Veterans Day serves to honor those who serve