U.S. Senate declares Birmingham as first home of Veterans Day
File Photo: The statue of Vulcan looking over Birmingham, now declared the first home of Veterans Day by the U.S. Senate.
U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a senior member of the Armed Services Committee, issued the following statement Tuesday after the Senate passed S.RES. 591, a measure he spearheaded to recognize Birmingham's integral role in the creation of Veterans Day:
"I was proud to work with my colleagues to pass this resolution, which establishes that Birmingham has held the first and longest-running celebration of Veterans Day. This resolution recognizes the role of Birmingham native Raymond Weeks, who is noted as the ‘Father of Veterans Day,' and pays tribute to the men and women in the Armed Forces who are risking life and limb at home and overseas for the United States. Alabama has an incredible tradition of military service and continues to make irreplaceable contributions to our nation's defense. I am honored and humbled to represent so many brave and selfless patriots. They are a source of pride to us all and an example of character unmatched in the world."
In 2003, the House of Representatives passed a concurrent resolution that asserted that Emporia, Kansas was the "founding city" of Veterans Day, stated that Alvin J. King was the "founder" of Veterans Day, and recognized Representative Ed Rees as instrumental to the efforts to enact into law the observance of Veterans Day.
Sessions' resolution lays out a timeline of contributions made by the Birmingham Community and Raymond Weeks in order to properly establish Birmingham's role. The city recently conducted its 65th consecutive celebration of Veterans Day—the longest-running and oldest such celebration in the country. Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) is a cosponsor of Sessions' resolution.
As the Alabama and Kansas delegation have a long history of cooperation in the creation of Veterans Day, Sessions worked with the Kansas delegation and veterans groups to ensure that the clarifications and declarations in his resolution do not diminish the contributions of the people of Kansas, including the signing of the legislation enacting Veterans Day by Kansas native President Dwight Eisenhower.
Sessions also coordinated with U.S. Representatives Spencer Bachus and Terri Sewell to introduce identical language (H.Con.Res.138) in the House.
INFORMATION SOURCE: Senator Jeff Session's Press Office
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