The day before newspapers reported: “World’s greatest war is at an end!” in 1918, Lima had thrown a parade of the likes not seen before in Allen County.
They were celebrating armistice between the Allies and Germany and a reporter had noted, “With banners flying and bands playing, with nothing but cheerfulness on every hand and with a realization that victory was within the grasp of the American army and people, thousands and thousands of Lima residents marched in the War Chest parade Sunday afternoon, showing that their sympathies are with the boys ‘over there’ and that in every way they will help to make life easier for the lads fighting across the seas and getting ready to ‘go across’ in the cantonments.”
Afterwards, that night, in an amazing and beautiful moment, factory whistles blew and thousands upon thousands of people had gathered downtown, pulling just-used parade floats back out of storage and off down the streets they went again.
The scene was one of jubilation with much noise, laughter and tears of happiness and relief; and one that didn’t end for an entire day and night as businesses were closed and people had returned “after eating supper and staying until about midnight”.
A poignant moment was shared when talking about mothers who had sons that had died in the war. These women were carrying a service flag that had a gold star on them that declared their son had died while in service, and a few of these flags had also included one or two blue stars that showed their son(s) were “over there”.
Today was once known as Armistice Day, a day declared a national holiday not just by us here in the States but also one in other countries as well, but was changed to Veterans Day after World War II.
A moment of silence, often times two minutes, is observed every November 11th at 11:00 a.m. to remember and honor those who had given the ultimate sacrifice for our country. Although many have tried to fight it because they believe it is used to “disguise prayer”, millions refuse to budge out of deep and abiding respect, love and honor for our fallen.
We will never be able to repay the incredible honor veterans have shown this country by giving all they could, but “never” is also the word for the day they will be forgotten.
Sources: limaohio.com/articles/lima-74532-war-nov.html, Adrienne McGee; history.com/this-day-in-history; va.gov/vetdata/Veteran_Population.asp
For More Information:
Veterans Affairs Clinic
1303 Bellefontaine Avenue
Lima, OH 45804-3109
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