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To thank every veteran today, you’d have to say ‘thanks for your service’ more than 21 million times

WILLMAR — Today is Veterans Day, which originated as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, the first anniversary of the end of World War I.

Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance and Nov. 11 became a national holiday starting in 1938.

Here are some facts about veterans in the U.S., according to U.S. Census Bureau data:

n As of 2012, there were 21.2 million military veterans in the country, including 1.6 million female veterans, 9.6 million veterans over the age of 65 and 1.8 million under the age of 35.

n Those veterans include 7.4 million from the Vietnam era and 5.4 million in the Gulf Wars from 1990 to the present, 1.6 million from World War II and 2.3 million from the Korean War, plus 5.3 million who served in peacetime.

n There are three states with more than a million veterans, including 1.9 million in California, and 1.6 million each in Texas and Florida.

Gretchen Schlosser

Gretchen Schlosser is the public safety reporter, and writes about agriculture occasionally, for the West Central Tribune. She's been with the Tribune since 2006 and has 17 years of experience working in news, media and communications. 

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