Every May 1 Americans honor the sacrifices of the combat wounded, ill and dying service members on Silver Star Service Banner Day. The history of the service banner dates back to 1917 or 1918, following the suggestions of Women’s Committee of the Council of National Defenses.  The use of Blue and Gold Star Service Banners was formally adopted into the United States Code and made official, leaving the Silver Star Service Flag overlooked.  A new Silver Star Service Flag and Banner were designed and were quickly accepted widely used throughout the United States. The United States House of Representatives passed H Res. 855, a stand-alone resolution on April 21, 2010, making the SSFOA Silver Star Service Banner official and making May 1 Silver Star Service Banner Day. {Courtesy National Day of Calendar}

I’m glad the U. S. as a whole has come to the conclusion that our service members should be recognized and thanked, whether we agree with the conflict they have been involved in or not. Why we are involved in a conflict is an argument to be taken up with our government. When a new military member raises their hand and says they will serve, they are expected to take orders and follow them without question. It isn’t their choice where they go or if they want to do what is expected of them. It is a sacrifice from the very beginning, family days no longer exist, and staying close to home is a rarity.

When a service member returns from assignment, or finishes their enlistment, they often come home with visible and invisible scars. It’s easy to recognize a facial scar, or missing limb. It’s not easy to recognize what they are now calling “brain trauma”. That refers to the emotional wounds from being involved in combat; what they had to do to survive, or what they saw happen right next to them. War is ugly, sometimes expectations in a non-war zone are just as ugly.

I share this in case you don’t have any personal connection to someone who has served in our military, in an attempt to educate. Our service members deserve recognition and that is what the Silver Star Service Banner Day is all about.