Here’s How Tampa Bay Is Paying Tribute To Those Who Served

Parades, honor guards, ceremonies and fundraisers, all centering around Veterans Day, will take place this week.

By D’Ann Lawrence White, Patch Staff |

TAMPA BAY, FL — Veterans Day, commemorated annually on Nov. 11, was first celebrated in 1919 to honor those who fought in World War I. It was initially called Armistice Day and was renamed Veterans Day in 1954.

The holiday’s origin is tied to the armistice, a temporary end of hostilities between the Allied nations and Germany signed in France on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month.

It became Veterans Day in 1954, shortly following the end of the Korean War and less than a decade after World War II, after various veterans service organizations urged Congress to encompass veterans of all wars in their honor.

Residents throughout Tampa Bay will celebrate the area’s many veterans with parades, ceremonies and special events.

Soldiers’ Angel Adopt-A-Family
The national nonprofit organization Soldiers’ Angels is making the 2021 holiday season a little brighter for U.S. military and veteran families through the relaunch of its annual Adopt-A-Family campaign.

The Soldiers’ Angels Holiday Adopt-A-Family program matches businesses, organizations and individuals with qualified military and veteran families who could use some help providing the holiday celebration their families deserve.

“Affording Christmas or winter holiday gifts for your family can be hard, and doing so on deployment or on a military or veteran family budget is even harder,” said Amy Palmer, president and CEO of Soldiers’ Angels. “The goal of the adopt-a-family campaign is to ensure that all families who have sacrificed for the good of the nation are provided a holiday they’ve earned and deserve.”

Last holiday season, nearly 1,500 families were supported through the adopt-a-family campaign. However, additional sponsors were lined up to adopt even more families. This year, Soldiers’ Angels is doubling down on its outreach efforts in order to connect all those who want to show their gratitude to military and veteran families.

Veteran and military families in need of additional support this holiday season can visit here
between now and Dec. 6 to learn more and apply. Once accepted, families are adopted by Soldiers’ Angels sponsors. At minimum, sponsors who adopt a family provide gifts for the children and a grocery gift card to offset the purchase of a holiday dinner and its trimmings.

The following families are eligible based on financial need:

Deployed service members who are registered and approved for Deployed Support, are an E1-E6, meet income requirements and will be deployed through Dec. 25
Honorably discharged Post-9/11 wounded, ill or injured veterans
U.S. Housing and Urban Development VASH voucher veteran families.
To be eligible, all military or veteran families must be a legal guardian to one or more children, age 18 and under, living in the home and not yet graduated from high school.