In 1999, the United States Congress voted in favor of creating National Military Appreciation Month, a celebration every May of the men and women who serve and have served in our country’s armed forces. May was chosen as the designated month due to the number of pre-existing military-related holidays that occur in its 31-day span. The most well-known of those holidays, Memorial Day, wraps up the month-long celebration on the last Monday of the month, which falls on May 30 this year.
As of 2013, the US employed over 1.4 million active-duty soldiers and sailors. Of those 1.4 million, Georgia had the fifth-highest number of active-duty military personnel when separated by state, sitting at well over 72,000. (It was beaten by California, Virginia, Texas, and North Carolina – all of which had over 100,000 each – and was followed by Florida, which sat at just over 65,000.)
NMAM is particularly close to the hearts of those living in South Georgia due to the proximity of Moody Air Force Base, which opened in 1941 and is located 10 miles north of Valdosta. The base brings in service men and women and their families from all over the country, contributes a staggering $400 to $450 million to the local economy every year, and attracts businesses to the area.
In honor of NMAM, we would like to thank the soldiers and sailors who have fought and continue to fight for our country’s security and its citizens’ rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
Military-Related Holidays in May:
5/1 Loyalty Day
5/6 Military Spouse Appreciation Day
5/8 Victory in Europe Day
5/21 Armed forces Day
5/30 Memorial Day
Branches of US Armed Forces:
Types of Military Service:
Active duty – full time soldiers/sailors
Reserve/guard forces – members have a civilian job, but can be called to active duty
Veterans/retirees – members who once served, but do not currently serve
Fisher House Foundation
Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
National Military Family Association
Wounded Warrior Project
Health & Life May/June 2016
By Anna Limoges