Above / Veterans Day again brought folks together to observe the special significance of the day with thoughtful reflections, gratitude and tributes at Veterans Park. “Peace” plays a prominent part at Veterans Park across from Grace United Methodist Church on Gartner Road. The community gathered here and around the world to say “thanks” at 11AM on the 11th Day of the 11th month or at “11-11-11.”

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace.” —Douglas MacArthur

Douglas MacArthur (1880-1964) was a Five-Star General in the U.S. Army, in command of the the Pacific theater during World War II.


Wherever you stand, pause, take a few moments to reflect and be grateful for dedicated Veterans and their military service at home and overseas every day and especially on Veterans Day.

Naperville is blessed to show its patriotism every day at Veterans Park and throughout the community with monuments, Freedom Shrines and other commemorative messages along the Riverwalk as well as in Burlington Square Park, Central Park and Fredenhagen Park. And every Nov. 11 just before 11AM, folks gather in Veterans Park with an attitude of gratitude to share their respect with thoughts and music.  

Veterans Day is different from Memorial Day.  Note that World War I officially ended when the Treaty of Versailles was signed on June 28, 1919, even though the fighting ended about seven months earlier when the Allies and Germany put into effect an armistice on “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month,” often referred to as “11-11-11.”

Therefore, Nov. 11, 1918, was deemed the end of “the war to end all wars” and known as Armistice Day. In 1926, Congress officially recognized it as the end of the war, and 12 years later it became an official holiday, set aside to honor veterans of World War I. And in 2018, the world is celebrating the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I.

But then came World War II and the Korean War. On June 1, 1954, Congress amended the commemoration by changing the word “armistice” to “veterans.”  

These days, Veterans Day is an extra time to simply remember to say “thanks” to all men and women who have served this nation defending freedom. 

Veterans Day is every year at the 11th Hour on the 11th Day of the 11th Month

The Naperville American Legion Post 43 and the Judd Kendall VFW Post 3873 welcomed all Veterans and the community to a brief observance at 11AM on Nov. 11, at Veterans Park, located at 303 E. Gartner Road, across the street from Grace United Methodist Church. 

During the “11-11-11” tribute, rousing patriotic music was provided by an ensemble from the Naperville Municipal Band.

Note! Same time next year!

Naperville Municipal Band Veterans Day Concert is 3PM Nov. 11

For 2018, the annual Veterans Day Concert will be performed at 3PM Sun., Nov. 11, on stage at Wentz Concert Hall in the North Central College Fine Art Center, located at 171 E. Chicago Ave. NMB Conductor Ron Keller and its two Assistant Conductors René R. Rosas and Emily Binder will lead the 90-piece band. Ann Lord again will serve as emcee.

The concert is free of admission charge.

During this year’s Veterans Day concert, Operation Support Our Troops America will be recognized for its contributions to Veterans around the world. A collection of most-needed items (click here) for Comfort and Care Packages that will be sent to military service men and women overseas will take place in the lobby.  The requests are for more food items and I-Tunes cards.

A few of the items (no glass) on the list include: Peanut Butter; Jelly; Dried Fruit / Raisins /Cran Raisins, etc.; Rice Krispie Bars; Individual Trail Mix; Snack Crackers / Cookies; Cans / Jars of Nuts (no glass); White Athletic Socks; Individual Cold Drink Mix (Gatorade, Propel, Lemonade Singles); Individual Snack Size Nuts; Gum & Mints;  Jerky / Slim Jims;  Pop Tarts / Breakfast Bars.

Annual Veterans Day Dinner & Social begins at 5PM Nov. 11

As in years past, the Judd Kendall VFW Post 3873 and the American Legion Post 43 again will host their “Combined Posts” Veterans Day Social and Dinner. The event will be held beginning at 5PM Sun., Nov. 11, at the VFW, 908 W. Jackson Ave.  The social hour begins at 5PM followed by dinner at 6PM. Please note the earlier time.  Early reservations were suggested as the maximum seating is 200.  

Again, a “Traditional Turkey Dinner with all of the Trimmings” will be prepared by our Kendall Cooks, organizers said. 

The program will feature several WWII Veterans with their personal stories, “What Veterans Day Means to Me.” 

The reservation deadline was Wed., Nov. 7.  To check last-minute availability, call (630) 803-2251 or email jenniferbslown@gmail.com

“Please plan to come and see your friends and enjoy an evening “Honoring our Veterans,” said Jennifer Slown-Jr. Vice Commander, of the American Legion.


RELATED POSTS / Photos of Veterans Day Weekend 2018 by James Hoch.

James Hoch Photography collection from 2018 Marines Corp Ball