Celebrate the National Day of the Deployed
What You Can Do For This Year’s National Day of the Deployed
National Day of the Deployed is a day which honors the sacrifices that deployed service members and their families have made and continue to make in defense of our country. This day is celebrated yearly on October 26th.
National Day of the Deployed is Oct 26, 2020
This commemorative day was first celebrated in Grand Forks, North Dakota in 2006 after being proposed by resident Shelle Michaels Aberle. As a way to celebrate her deployed cousin, LTC David Hosna, Shelle introduced the idea to the state’s then-governor, John Hoeven. He initiated a state proclamation that October 26th, which happened to be LTC Hosna’s birthday, would become Day of the Deployed, to honor local, deployed units out of Grand Forks Air Base.
It took about four years, but eventually the majority of states began recognizing Day of the Deployed in some way. While it isn’t a federally-mandated holiday, it is acknowledged through ceremonies and celebrations.
After John Hoeven became a North Dakota State Senator, he pushed for the establishment of Day of the Deployed as a nationally-recognized holiday. His resolution passed unanimously on October 18th, 2011, and has passed each year since.
Upon its first passing, Senator Hoeven released a statement that said, “Our men and women in uniform bravely and willingly answer the call to serve our nation. We are extremely grateful to them and their loved ones for all of the sacrifices they make on our behalf. These brave Americans are in our thoughts and prayers not only on this Day of the Deployed, but every day. While we can never thank them enough, the Day of the Deployed is a gesture to show our gratitude and appreciation for their sacrifices.”
National Day of the Deployed: How You Can Get Involved and Celebrate
To support this day, and the people it represents, there are a number of ways you can get involved:
- Touch base with a deployed service member/family that you know
- Create and send care packages to troops (or donate money to the cause)
- Partner with or donate to Soldiers’ Angels, a program which provides aid, comfort, and resources to the military, veterans, and their families
- Display a yellow ribbon, meant to indicate remembrance of those who serve far from home.
- Reach out and/or donate to a military support organization, such as the Veterans Of Foreign Wars, the United Services Organization, the Disabled American Veterans, and many others
- Use the hashtag #DayOfTheDeployed on social media on October 26th to raise awareness and encourage others to show support
- Prepare dinner or host a gathering for the family of a deployed service member
- Take care of a deployed family in other ways, by lending a hand around the house, delivering groceries, offering to babysit, or treating the present parent to a spa day
- Openly recognize the sacrifice of both the service member and their family in any safe way you can think of
No matter the gesture any act of kindness is greatly appreciated and does make a difference in the lives of those you are showing support to.
If you are a deployed service member or a military family member, there are a number of resources and guides to help you before, during, and after deployment:
- Military and Family Support Centers, located on military installations
- MilitaryOneSource’s Deployment Resources for Families
- Deployment: How To Prepare
- Take Ownership of Deployments
- Financial Planning For Your Next Deployment
- USPS Holiday Shipping Dates 2020
- How To: Military Care Package Do’s and Don’ts