As always we honor and appreciate our military veterans in our Residences Senior Living communities and their respective larger communities. At the same time there is another group of individuals living in these communities who deserve our appreciation—military spouses. We include these ladies as heroines because their stories of life while husbands were serving are deserving of recognition.
President Ronald Reagan thought so when he established Military Spouse Appreciation Day through proclamation on April 17, 1984. In 1999 congress made it official that Military spouse Appreciation Day would become part of National Military appreciation Month each May. Military spouse appreciation Day is traditionally the Friday before Mother’s Day, with the rationale being that approximately over 90% of military spouses are female. Notwithstanding, increasingly women are serving while their husbands have become military spouses.
Why honor the military spouse?
The importance of support and morale boosts to those who serve their country, especially during time of war or conflict overseas is essential to the well-being of those in the armed services, and to the communities throughout the country. Many military spouses have sacrificed their own careers to keep the family together; often they travel from base to base with their spouse. They fill critical roles in government, hospitals, and service agencies in these communities. In today’s world many are fulfilling needs for all types of services, especially in HR (Human Resources) because they are able to work remotely and their often “nomadic” lifestyle no longer becomes a barrier.
As with most national observances, Military Spouse Appreciation has its own symbolic overtones. There is a lapel pin of a tree symbolizing life, designed to relate what the military spouse is to the military—sturdy but without roots, again recognizing the “nomadic life” of the family. They have a designated color and flower—yellow rose symbolizing love.
Recognizing the importance and sacrifices of the military spouse, our country has felt the obligation to offer support in new ways. On May 11 of this year President Biden created a Proclamation on Military Spouses Day to describe the First Lady’s initiative Joining Forces which is committed to supporting military and veteran families, caregivers and survivors through increased pathways to Federal careers as well as private sector opportunities through paid fellowships. The promise is to broaden parental leave and access to quality child care, scholarships leading to licenses, certificates, and associate degrees for military spouses.
Many if not most of our residents can say with great pride that they are military spouses. Certainly we will remember their contributions every May, but we also feel compelled to recognize the roles they played, the life they endured, while their spouses were serving their country, both here and abroad, on this Veteran’s Day. Together they forged a model we strive to live up to—a model of sacrifice and endurance to protect peace and freedom.