Donovan: This Veterans Day, show support to those who served


Jennifer Donovan writes on behalf of American Legion Auxiliary’s National Headquarters.

Veterans Day, Nov. 11, is a day set aside to remember and recognize veterans who have served in the U.S. military or who are currently serving to protect our freedoms.

Members of the American Legion Family organizations — the American Legion, the American Legion Auxiliary and the Sons of the American Legion — will be hosting special events throughout the country to show their support, at local post homes and in their communities. But you don’t have to be part of the Legion Family to make a difference in the life of a veteran.

We want as many veterans as possible to take part in these events and to take advantage of the special offers at restaurants and stores, but we know not all veterans will be able. Consider those veterans who can’t easily leave their homes, who feel isolated or just don’t feel comfortable going out alone.

Anyone can make a difference. It can be as simple as a phone call or text, taking a veteran a meal or a lunch invitation.

This Veterans Day, join the American Legion Family in a “Be the One” mission: Be the one to destigmatize asking for mental health support, provide peer-to-peer support and resources, and educate everyone on how they can be the one.

Why is this important? Pentagon data has shown a rise in military suicides in the past decade. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs’ 2022 National Veteran Suicide Prevention Annual Report, suicide is the second leading cause of death for veterans ages 18-44.

How can you help?

  • Ask veterans in your life how they are doing.
  • Listen when a veteran needs to talk.
  • Reach out when you think a veteran might be struggling.

Those needing help are encouraged to call the Veterans Crisis Line at 988, then press 1. They may also text 838255 or visit the Veterans Affairs’ crisis line website at

“Just be the one to save one,” said 2023-24 American Legion Auxiliary national president Lisa Williamson. “All those ‘ones’ add up.”

Reader reactions, pro or con, are welcomed at

Members and subscribers make this story possible.
You can help support non-partisan, community journalism.