NATIONAL FORGET-ME-NOT DAY
National Forget-Me-Not Day on November 10th reminds Americans of the sacrifices returning soldiers have made of body, blood, and limb. Created in 1921, the day reminds Americans that National Forget-Me-Not Day originally raised funds for services for returning injured soldiers. At the time, the existing hospitals were insufficient to support the numbers of returning disabled veterans.
The Forget-Me-Not is a flower symbolizing remembrance.
The day serves to honor all past and current United States Military veterans who bear the permanent scars of battle.
HOW TO OBSERVE #ForgetMeNotDay
Remember to support our disabled veterans. Volunteer, donate, and wear a forget-me-not. You can also:
- Learn more about the history of World War I.
- Reconnect with a military veteran.
- Hire a disabled veteran. Their wounds do not represent their skills.
Use #ForgetMeNotDay to post on social media.
NATIONAL FORGET ME NOW DAY HISTORY
Forget-Me-Not Day hearkens back to The Great War. At that time, wounded soldiers returned requiring continued care long after the war ended. While the wounded veterans’ plight was not new, no services existed to treat their needs. Additionally, the government was unprepared for the number of returning wounded. Very few services and organizations existed to provide the care and support the veterans needed.
Eventually, a movement to remember and deliver services to returning soldiers began in earnest in 1921. And that movement began thanks to one injured soldier.
Judge Robert S. Marx
Judge Robert S. Marx called on the nation to establish a day reminding the country of their veteran’s sacrifices. The day also recognized the needs of disabled soldiers, creating a fundraising platform as a way to provide the necessary services wounded veterans needed. The day was called Forget-Me-Not Day and funds were raised by selling forget-me-nots. The first published occurrence of this day was on December 17, 1921.
Injured on November 10, 1918, Marx served during the Meuse-Argonne Offensive. He returned to the United States to heal from his injuries soon afterward. Since he practiced law before entering the military, Marx took up his practice once more. Soon, Marx was elected judge. Before long, his interest in veterans’ affairs became apparent. From fundraising to speeches, Marx made the rounds. When In 1920, the Disabled American Veterans of the World War (DAVWW) was founded, Judge Marx became the first leader of the organization. The DAVWW held their first National Caucus on September 25, 1920. Through the DAVWW in 1922 the first official Forget-Me-Not Day fundraising campaign launched on November 11th.
Throughout the 1920s, the organization selected several days in November to observe National Forget-Me-Not Day, including November 11th. However, the day is now well established as Veteran’s Day or Armistice Day. Another well-known Forget-Me-Not Day is September 26th. Also known as Argonne Day in honor of the decisive battle through the Meuse-Argonne Forest.
Today, the organization that founded National Forget-Me-Not Day is named the Disabled American Veterans, supporting all disabled veterans.
Q. Does any state claim the Forget-Me-Not as its state flower?
A. The official state flower of Alaska, the forget-me-not grows well throughout the open, rocky places, high in the mountains of the state.
Q. When was the first facility for disabled veterans established?
A. President Abraham Lincoln signed into law the first bill approving the establishment of a home for totally disabled veterans of the Union Army and Navy troops on March 3, 1865.
November 10th Celebrated (And Not So Celebrated) History
The Continental Congress establishes the Continental Marines creating two battalions to protect and fight from land and sea.
Journalist Henry Morton Stanley arrives in the village Ujiji in Tanzania after an eight-month-long search for the man he’d been looking for. “Mr. Livingstone, I presume?” he asks the thin and disheveled explorer many had assumed dead.
Full of approachable Muppet characters and educational themes, Sesame Street debuted on PBS television.
Home Alone starring Macaulay Culkin premiered in Chicago theaters.
November 10th Celebrated (And Not So Celebrated) Birthdays
Michael Strank – 1919
In 1939, Strank enlisted in the Marine Corps and attained the rank of sergeant. He was one of the six men raising the American flag on top of Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima on February 23, 1945, during World War II. Sgt. Strank was killed only a few days later on March 1st.
Russell Means – 1939
Best known for his roles in Last of the Mohicans and Natural Born Killers, the actor and producer also served as the first national director of the American Indian Movement.
James Hood – 1942
Hood became one of the first African Americans to integrate the University of Alabama. In 1963, he and Vivian Malone drew national attention when Alabama Governor George Wallace defied the deputy attorney general. Later, the National Guard was called to assist and federalized by President John F. Kennedy to permit the students to attend.
Ellen Pompeo – 1969
The award-winning actress has played the role of Dr. Meredith Grey on Grey’s Anatomy since 2005.