The History Of Veterans Day

The Great War ends in the Eleventh month
On the Eleventh hour of the Eleventh day
It was called the "War to end all Wars"
At least, that's what they used to say.


President Wilson proclaimed Armistice Day
To Honor those who died in "The Great War"
To "Celebrate the sanctity of Peace"
Was what this Special Day was for.


The second Anniversary of the Armistice
France and England honored their Unknown Dead
President Wilson named the nearest Sunday
To be "Armistice Day Sunday", in its stead.


The Tomb Of The Unknown Soldier
Was Dedicated at Arlington
Congress Declared the Eleventh a Federal Holiday
For the year of Nineteen twenty-one.


Legislation is passed by Congress
To make it a legal Federal Holiday
And most States choose to follow suit
And Honor that same Armistice Day.


World War Two is fought and won
And adds several millions more
Of veterans who Served our Country
And who Fought in another World War.


We had the War in Korea
And once more those numbers grew
Making three within the Tomb
Of those Soldiers no one knew.


President Eisenhower changed the name
And since then, known as veterans Day
To Honor all who have ever Served
Our Nation in that Military way.


We had America's longest War
That was never to be completed
Some wounds lasting until this day
Sadly, back Home some were mistreated.


Congress passes the Monday Holiday Law
Changing it to the fourth one in October
Why they had to mess with it?
I bet they didn't even know, for sure.


They changed their mind once again
In Seventy-five, to change it back
Seems they'd have better things to do
But for wasting time, they have a knack.


To 2005
Seems we have been at War forever
And sometimes seems to be no end
Will we ever have Peace on Earth
And Troops with nowhere to send?
For as long as we need them
We will have those who Serve us all
Who will step up, do Wartime's job
Whenever they hear our Nation's call.
So this day let's tell them, "Thank you!"
And show all those Brave Souls we care
Whether they Serve us here at home
Or somewhere afar, way over there.
And let's say a Prayer for all those Lost
Heroes of whom we stand in awe
For giving their all to Wartime's curse
To this sad, uniquely Human flaw.


To 2010
Almost out of one Country
Going on ten years in the other
Will we Humans never know Peace
And, quit killing one another?


The word is, “We’re pulling out!”
That one War is coming to an end
Let’s hope, that soon, they’ll all be home
All of those Heroes, that we send.

Del "Abe" Jones

(Last verse penned 11.08.2011)

And, They Were There, Too

(Etched in Ellis County Veterans Memorial in Waxahachie, Texas)
Not enough credit given, to mothers, sisters, daughters, wives,
Some too, who gave their all, the best years of their lives.
There's some, wore a uniform, of one of the military "branches"
And like all of those men, taken some deadly chances.
Some were in the U.S.O., brought a little taste of home,
With small talk, donuts, coffee, where'er the troops would roam.
There was "Rosie the Riveter," who fought her own war here.
And the nurses that eased the pain, and tried to ease the fear.
There were women pilots, who put their lives on the line,
Said, "Send me where you will. That suits me, just fine!"
Those who stayed at home, to raise their families,
Who gave all, went without, realizing harsh realities.
So many of those women, who gave so much more
Than they were asked to, during each and every war.
We honor those, upon this stone, and give our humble "Thanks"
To those who served with honor, in our country's wartime ranks.

Vets Day

November 11th

(Written for and recited at the dedication

Ellis County Veterans Memorial in

Waxahachie, Texas)

There are so many great towns

That make up this great nation

And the heroes from them

Boggle the imagination.

Those who answer the call

In peace and wartime’s strife

Who give of themselves

So, we can live this life.

Some go and fight those wars

Some die, some hurt, survive

But all that they believe in

Is what keeps freedom alive.

It’s all those American towns

And people who live there

Who stand and fight for freedom

For people, everywhere.

Somebody’s dad or brother

Husband, daughter or son

Mother, sister, cousins

We all, know someone.

Who, when freedom was threatened

Here at home, around the world

Were determined to insure

Freedoms flag remained unfurled.

They believe and fight for

The things this world needs

They might not always win

But they’ll have planted the seeds.

In time of peace or conflict

There’s always a price to pay

And today, we pay them tribute

On this Veterans Day.

Some Battles, Never Won!
Warring nations can call a truce
Or they can ask for a cease-fire
Try something, like an armistice
To bring an end, to wartime ire.
The guns may stop the shooting
While the bombs no longer burst
The din of war may quiet down
And the Troops may be dispersed.
The body counts may be totaled
The wounded, sent home to heal
Newspapers proclaim, “War Ends!”
To most, war’s horror, seems unreal.
Things may return to normal
The feuding people go their way
Out of sight and out of mind
It’s just another ordinary day.
For most of us, memories dim
It just becomes part of the past
If it didn’t touch us directly
It’s doubtful any pain will last.
But, for so many Troops returning
It’s a different World, for sure
Wounded deeper than the flesh
For some, there will be no cure.
With images burned in the mind
And the sounds of death and pain
The guilt of another life taken
Having been to the edge of, sane.
With some, a look into their eyes
Will show you, a different being
Not the one, you knew before
That you looked forward to seeing.
War opens a new dimension
That most of us will never see
The World they had left behind
Will now, forever, cease to be.
Sometimes, they’ll speak about it
But, for most, it’s held inside
And sadly, for far too many
There’s that pain, they cannot hide.
When those folks return to us
From where, most will never know
We must try to understand them
When they let other feelings show.
They all have Served their Nation
For that’s what, Soldiers are for
Each deserve our praise and thanks
Although not all, have gone to War.
Each knows there is the chance
That, any time in day or night
They may be called on to deploy
And be sent somewhere to fight.
All Veterans who have served us
Through long hours with little pay
Should be respected all the time
Not only, just on, Veterans Day.



(November 10)
Eight years after they were formed
At the end of the Revolutionary War
All the Navy s ships were sold
Marines and Sailors were no more.
Then, in Seventeen ninety-eight
The Marines once more came to be
And they fought Barbary pirates
Along the Shores of Tripoli .
During the War of Eighteen Twelve
They defended Washington
Along with many other Operations
Before that War was done.
They served in the Mexican War
And among Battles that they fought
One to the Halls of Montezuma
Alongside General Winfield Scott.
Bull Run during the Civil War
And blockades at Cape Hatteras
At New Orleans and Charleston
And Fort Fisher toward the last.
The Spanish-American War
The Boxer Rebellion in China
Fights in Cuba, Mexico, Haiti
In Nicaragua and Panama.
On the Battlefields of France
The Devil Dogs earned their name
And many thousands killed or wounded
In World War One s deadly game.
And most of us know their stories
About the Heroes of WWII
There s some seem impossible
But we all know they are true.
During the War in Korea
Twenty-five thousand gave their all
Fighting many gallant battles
Answering our Country s call.
The Cold War found them everywhere
In countries all around the Earth
Trying hard to keep the Peace
And showing all their worth.
In Sixty-Five they landed in Da Nang
With eighty-five thousand in country
They served with Pride and Honor
Although our Country would not see.
On their Two Hundred Thirtieth Birthday
We have them serving in Iraq
As well as so many other places
To try to hold the Terrorists back.
Maybe someday there will be Peace
And Good Will on Earth and more
But until then let’s all give Thanks
We have the United States Marine Corps.
KIA! Only Numbers?
Two hundred, twenty-eight years
That, we have been going to war
Eleven times we said, “For freedom!”
Was, what we were fighting for.
We’ve spent two, point, six trillion
But that was just a petty cost
Compared to all of the spent lives
Of those loved ones, who were lost.
Thirty-two hundred plus, a month
For more than thirty-two years
The total time fighting our enemies
And more time, shedding our tears.
One and one quarter million dead
That’s more than fifteen every day
Since we went to war, “For freedom!”
In our Revolutionary way.
One and one half million wounded
For this Country of the Free
Although some of these losses
Were the Union’s and Confederacy.
But, all of them are Veterans
Who fought for what they believed
In their own way, doing battle
For those Freedoms, they perceived.
As of late, a Veteran’s definition
Has come from a different kind of War
For which we all, are conscripted
To help guard, our Freedom’s door.
Let’s Honor, each and every one
And though we may not know each name
They were so much more than numbers
In every Wartime’s deadly “game”.
And, each November eleventh
In the years, that come to be
Let’s hope someday, all People
Live in a land, where they are Free.
Let’s make Veteran’s Day a memory
And a part of days gone past
Learn to live with our Fellowman
In a Free World at Peace, at last.



Well, here we are, once again
With Veterans, in heart and mind
Still trying to heal, from 9/11
Facing Saddam, and his kind.
With a new War, looming
And the one that we now fight
Our Soldiers and our Nation
Willing , to do what’s right.
It’s not something, we want
But, something, that we must
As long as we, all believe
Our cause, is true and just.
Seasoned troops and new recruits
And Patriots in our Homeland
All hoping for peace and goodwill
And Freedom, in every foreign land.
Maybe some way, sometime, this day
Will be one, of true celebration
With Veterans a part of the past
And no more War, for any Nation.



(originally for 2004)
We are set to Celebrate our Vets
In this year Two Thousand Five
Another year we wish them home
Each of them, Safe and Alive.
There’s some say, "The War is just!"
And some who say, "It’s just not right!"
But the ones we should be talking to
Are Those who Walk, not Talk the Fight.
Not all see things the way we do
In this good ol’ U S of A
For they have lived for centuries
In a completely different way.
Our Troops there Work to show them
How a People Freed can live
And They put Their Lives on the Line
And for Some, that’s what They Give.
So, as we approach this Veterans Day
We know this War is the “real deal”
We must all come together
And let Them all know how we feel.
For, to One and All we send our, "Thanks!"
And Pray for Their Quick and Safe return
And Hope Their Torch of Freedom lit
Will for Now and Always Burn.
And to Those who Served before Them
In all times of Peace and War
We owe them a Debt of Gratitude
For our Life of Liberty, and so much more.
Revised 10-30-2005


Another year we've been at War
And a record year, of Heroes killed
Will our hopes for an end to it
Never, ever be fulfilled?
The cost has been tremendous
And surely, they don't tell us all
Worse, loss of life and mind and limb
As our Troops, continue to fall.
Some, deployed several times
More, than we should rightly ask
But, they will go and do their Duty
To carry out, their given task.
Nearly four thousand gave their all
Almost thirty thousand hurt
Who tried to bring some civility
To that far-a-way, ancient, desert.
Many folks are against the War
And there's some who do protest
But one thing most all, agree on
Our Military, is the very best.
Let's not forget families and loved ones
All, who serve our Country, too
Who sacrifice and suffer for us
With Patriotism, proud and true.
Some of them will lose their Heroes
And will hurt and cry and grieve
And when handed that folded Flag
They will say, “I still believe!”
Maybe, “Mission accomplished!”
One day, will actually be true
But, till then, we must support them
And tell them, “Thanks, for all you do!”
And we must remember all those
Who served our Country in the past
To make our Nation Free
And to make sure it will last.
Del “Abe” Jones


Let’s not forget our POW/MIAs on this day!

POW/MIA Missing Man Ceremony

There’s a table in the front
Raised so that it draws attention
Reserved for all those missing
Still not found or in detention.

Set for six of those missing
One each, for branches Serving
One place for lost Civilians
Whom, are felt just as deserving.

The table is shaped in the round
For the everlasting concern
As all of us, hope and pray
Someday they all, will return.

The tablecloth is bright white
To symbolize the purity
Of those, answering the call
Of their Country, doing their Duty.

The single rose, in a vase
For the lifeblood of those lost
And for those awaiting answers
A sad part of Wartime’s cost.

The vase, tied with red ribbon
A symbol of determination
To account for those still missing
In the Service of our Nation.

A slice of lemon on the bread plate
For missing/captured in a foreign land
The bitter fate of some Heroes
Who chose to make a valiant stand.

A pinch of salt for all those tears
Shed, by missing and their Families
Seeking answers to their questions
From all those faraway countries.

The Bible represents the strength
Gained through Faith, to sustain
Those missing on foreign shores
Where, far too many, still remain!

Each of their glasses are inverted
Because, they can’t share the toast
That, one day we can account for them
What we want, first and foremost.

The candle is a light of Hope
To illuminate the way back home
To the loved ones who are waiting
Across the sea to Homeland’s loam.

The chair just sits there empty
A place saved for just the one
Who has yet, to come home
And one each, for their brethren.

An Honor Guard places covers
On each empty dinner plate
For the Services and Civilian
Who have met, this terrible fate.

“Taps” is played, and “Some Gave All”
With a spotlight on their table
With a toast, for their accounting, sworn
For, as long as we all are able.

This solemn Honors Ceremony
Symbolizes they are here with us
Hoping someday, they will be back
This wish, the most, in God we trust.

This can be done for six or one
For, the meaning is the same
That all, will be returned one day
This, we pray, in Heaven’s Name.

Del “Abe” Jones

I sent your poem paying tribute to POW/Missing vets to a friend in Iraq who serves over there as a contractor doing work for the Iraqis...he's a retired Army Lieutenant Colonel...he sent back a reply that the mess hall where he eats regularly has such a table set up for Missing/POW for all to see who come in there...he thought it ironic to receive that poem.
So, i replied back to him, "why don't you see what you can do to have the poem displayed on the table"...well, he replied back with the email that i am forwarding to you...i thought you'd want to know that your poem is getting displayed in the war zone.
Keep up the good work,

I verified that the poem sits directly across from the reserved chair. Adjacent to the rose. Our table has only one chair and is leaned against the table as if to reserve the seat.
Best Regards

(Etched on Ellis County Veterans
Memorial in Waxahachie, Texas Dedicated 11.11.2000 and inscribed on POW/MIA

Empty Chair Memorial at New Hampshire Motor Speedway,

Dedicated 07.17.2011)

So many fates are left unknown
And so many rumors that abound
So many families ask the question
“When will, the answers be found?”

So many years have come and gone
Sometimes, hope is hard to keep
There’s some who feel there’s none
And in some, it’s buried deep.

The pain, is in not knowing
How, to put loved ones’ to rest
When there is no way to prove
They have passed, the final test.

But, no matter what the answers
We can’t let this cause alone
Until, each and every one of them
Is found, and brought back home

Del "Abe" Jones


It's hard to find, the stories
That, they won't talk about
It's hard, to realize the things
That they had, to go, without.

How can they let the feelings
(Even, they don't understand)
Show to, any other people
In this, Freedom's Land.

We can’t know, the hardships
Unless, we were there
Especially, when they came back home
To those who didn't, seem, to care.

Unless you had, lived through it
Watching, Comrades that had died
Why should they, talk about it to us
Of, the tears, inside, they've cried?

Even, if they chose to tell us
What difference, would it make
Would it be worth the chance
That they, would have to take.

Why should they bare their soul
That's already been, stripped, clean
Because, even with, a picture of it
We couldn't see, what they have seen.

Sometimes, all we have to do
Is, to look into their eyes
And think that we might see or hear
Their, mournful, pain-filled cries.

That POW who came home
Who lived, through that Hell
Can't tell the stories, of the MIA
Who never had, a chance to tell!

So, we may never, ever, know
Of, the horrors, they have, known
And, if we think about it
It's probably best, that they aren't shown!

But there is, always an end
To every, never-ending story
Although sometimes, they’re never told
In, all their Truth and Glory.

So if you ask about it
And if you ever wonder why
They won’t talk of that nightmare
Maybe now, you might know, Why?

(The third Friday of September)

As time goes on, remains are found
And another finds his way back home
After years spent lost on foreign shores
Feeling forgotten and left all alone.

But they will never be forgotten
By the Country they went off to serve
We will search until all are returned
To loved ones, the least they all deserve.

There are new ways to identify
DNA can tell, just who they may be
Those lost in those past conflicts
A Hero home, their final destiny.

War is so terrible and horrific
Worse for the POW and the MIA
All of those unaccounted for
Compounds the price they chose to pay.

Each year, we should all remember
Those we lost in the fog of War
Better yet, take a moment every day
While we appreciate what they fought for.

POW/MIA Recognition Day
Dedicated to honor their memory
For the time or the life they gave
To keep this, "The Land of the Free".

Del "Abe" Jones

POW/MIA Remembrance Day
(Third Friday of September)

Thousands are still missing
From those Wars of the past
Slowly, some are coming home
To grieving Families, at last.

Some found in unmarked graves
On foreign lands across the sea
With the science of DNA
To reveal, their true identity.

JPAC was formed to find them
Around fourteen hundred, to date
And for loved ones seeking closure
It surely, never is, too late.

They think, forty thousand left
They might be able to recover
As they follow leads and tips
From, one country to another.

Some remains, may be lost forever
Like those Heroes, resting in the Deep
But, to bring those others home
Is a solemn promise, we must keep.

It’s a very noble thing they do
As, they go, and search, and find
Those, who died for our Country
For, we must, leave no one behind.

Every year we have a special day
To, remember those still lost
To, renew that promise to them
No matter what, it may cost.

Del "Abe" Jones

One More Came Home


Almost seventeen thousand missing
And who knows, how many Family/Friends
Have that pain, that hole inside
From that Lost one, which never ends.

I very often think about it
How very lucky, that I was
Not, to do the rich ones bidding
For that cause, that never was.

I thought about going back
When, those who ran, had the guts
It’s those like me & those who went
Who were the only crazy, nuts.

To die for, “God and Country”
Is really, wearing kinda thin
Especially when we make “them” rich
In those wars, we’ll never win.

We’ve been at it since our dawn
At war, killing, someone or other
And we even had that time
With Brother, killing, Brother.

Oh yes, there were those times
When, we had no other choice
But when there is no point to it
Where’s the Peacekeepers voice?

Sometimes, I am so ashamed
To be a lowly, Human being (?)
When, I look all around me
And see, all that, I am seeing!

In the name of some “god”?
For “country”, that doesn’t care?
A young life, for a few dollars
That’s how, we pay “their” fare!

But, guess we will never change
We’ll support, “their” hate and greed
And Human sacrifice, our offering
Will, never, fill, “their” need!

Del “Abe” Jones

The Empty Chair

(Inspired by my “POW/MIA” piece being inscribed on the Memorial

At New Hampshire Motor Speedway.)
Each and every venue
Should have an “Empty Chair”
To remind, all of us
And, to tell them, “We care!”
Not too much, to give
To those who, “gave their all”
Just a Tribute to them
Our cost, would be so, small!
For those missing and recovered
And for those, we still don’t know
Whose remains. may still come home
Or, where those still captive, go.
All of our sports “heroes?”
Who make millions on their back
Should shell out a little bit
To try, to get them back!
Thousands fate, are still unknown
And those Heroes didn’t know
How quick, they’d be forgotten
And the numbers, who don’t know.
“Leave no one behind”
Is tossed around too much
Especially by those people
Who, don’t really care that much.
We live in our Freedom
Because of those, we soon forget
Except, for a few of us
Who’ve not forgotten, YET!
Del “Abe” Jones


“Mankind's greatest accomplishment

is not the revolution of technology,

it is the evolution of creativity.”

© 1984 Del “Abe” Jones

More poetry here http://iwvpa.net/jonesd/index.php and here http://www.scribd.com/documents

You can read my latest book, "Of Native American" here


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