NFRW Armed Services Committee Encourages Members to Recognize and Thank our Armed Forces
The Department of Defense was created in 1947 having been preceded by the Department of War and Department of the Navy. This new organization unified all the military services under the leadership of one cabinet level appointee.
In 1949 President Harry S. Truman proposed and the Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced Armed Forces Day as a single day honoring personnel actively serving in one of the military branches now including: Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, Space Force and Coast Guard. The Army National Guard and the Air National Guard are components of their services and operate in part under state authority.
The third Saturday of every May is set aside to celebrate. The first Armed Forces Day was celebrated on May 20, 1950, using the theme “Teamed for Defense”. President John F. Kennedy made Armed Forces Day an official national holiday in 1961. A New York Post article from that timeframe stated, “Our Servicemen and women are serving throughout the world as guardians of peace–many of them away from their homes, their friends and their families. They are visible evidence of our determination to meet any threat to the peace with measured strength and high resolve. They are also evidence of a harsh but inescapable truth–that the survival of freedom requires great cost and commitment, and great personal sacrifice.” – President John F. Kennedy, 1963
This year Armed Forces Day is celebrated on Saturday May 15, 2021. Since Armed Forces Day's inception, special events such as parades, air shows, picnics, shopping discounts, etc. have been planned throughout the nation encouraging families to come together to acknowledge the great sacrifices of those who serve to protect our American way of life.
Local Federated Republican women's clubs can get involved by flying a flag, watching a military-themed movie, visiting a military memorial, museum, or cemetery in their area, making a donation to a local military organization or sending care packages to deployed service members and personally thanking military members for their service to our country.