Today is Veterans Day and unfortunately another casualty of the coronavirus is the annual parade in downtown Toms River which I always make a point of attending to show my support for the men and women who have served and continue to serve.

Organized by the Toms River Veterans Commission they will still mark the day by hosting a ceremony by the “Protectors of Freedom” sculpture at Bey Lea Park.

Meanwhile I would like to share with you the following which was something shared with me on Facebook:

Ever wonder why Veterans Day is on the 11th of November and that does not change regardless of the day of the week?  World War I ended on the 11th month on the 11th day on the 11th hour.  Today I saw a man who was selling poppies stop a lady and asked if he could re-position her poppy.  While doing so he told her that she should wear the poppy on her right side.  The red represents the blood of all those who gave their lives, the black represents the mourning of those who didn’t have their loved ones return home, and the green leaf represents the grass and crops growing and future prosperity after the war destroyed so much.  The leaf should be positioned at 11 o’clock to represent the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month, the time that World War I formally ended.  He was worried that younger generations wouldn’t understand this and his generation would not be around for much longer to teach them.  We must remember those from our current wars as well!

When I was young I remember you would see World War I veterans at parades and ceremonies but they are all gone and sadly so are most of those who served in World War II.  Today is a day in which we recognize all of those who served our country as well as those who wear the uniform today.

Despite the fact there will not be a parade in Toms River today it will not stop Korean War veteran Joe Placente from his annual tradition of marching down Main and Washington Streets carrying the American flag while dressed in red, white and blue.

Watch Joe's march below: