Give thanks to all veterans
Memorial Day is a day to pay our respects to those who lie where honor rests in our state and national cemeteries and in myriad other places across the world in both marked and unmarked graves.
It is a day to honor the living symbols of the American spirit: our veterans and their families, members of our armed services and their families, wherever they are and however they serve.
It is also a day to pause for a moment of silence during the “National Moment of Remembrance” at 3 p.m. local time, wherever we happen to be. The 3 o’clock hour was chosen because it is a time on this very important national holiday when most Americans are out and about enjoying the freedoms paid for by the current and former members of our armed forces.
California is home to the largest population of military, veterans and dependents in the United States, totaling more than 3 million people. An additional 30,000 veterans of the United States military return yearly to make California their home.
Veterans have potential entitlement to many benefits, including disability, vocational rehabilitation, education, medical and burial benefits based on their military service. CalVet’s aim is to help facilitate their return to civilian life by helping them to take advantage of the benefits they have earned.
Editor’s note: Gravett is the secretary of the California Department of Veterans Affairs.