Vice President Joe Biden, assisted by Maj. Gen. Karl Horst, U.S. Army Military District Washington commanding general, participated in the National Veterans Day Observance, by laying a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Shortly after the ceremony, Biden spoke at an observance program hosted by the Department of Veterans Affairs in Arlington's Memorial Amphitheater.

Biden spoke before a packed amphitheater about the nation's commitment to helping returning military men and women and shared some of his experiences during his visits to wounded warriors in various hospitals throughout the world.

"Believe it or not, the single most frequently asked question I received from wounded veterans, is if I could help them get back to their units once they are healed," said Biden. "You don't forget that type of dedication to our country and I guarantee that the president and I will not forget their service."

Biden also mentioned the nation's pride and gratitude for all of the veterans who fought in past conflicts as well as the American military members today fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Wreath laying at a memorial site is a ritual that occurs around the world and is understood in every culture. The ceremony is a tribute to the beauty and the brevity of life and reminds one of past days.

Veterans Day was originally established to honor Americans who had served in World War I. The national holiday is celebrated November 11, the anniversary of the day World War I ended in 1918. Today Veterans Day honors veterans of all wars for their patriotism and willingness to serve in the military and sacrifice for our country.

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16