By: Jonathan Goad
For our U.S. readers, we all know that Sunday (yesterday) November 11th was Veteran’s Day. It also marked the 100th anniversary of the end of World War II. Veteran’s Day is a day that we recognize those who have served in our military. For those of you that know me personally, you know I think everyday should be Veteran’s Day and know that I have the utmost respect for our veterans. They sacrifice everything for our freedom and don’t expect anything in return. They are the true heroes in this world, along with first responders and policemen and women.
The sports world usually does a very good job with Veteran’s Day recognition. Each of the major sports has some sort of way to recognize veterans of this great country. Whether it’s special jerseys or a moment before the game, they typically show great respect to our military heroes.
The Major League Baseball season doesn’t extend to Veteran’s Day, but they do play on Memorial Day and the Fourth of July (Independence Day). The MLB has always done a fantastic job with its recognition of our veterans. During these holidays, they create special uniforms and hats that the players will wear for the holiday weekend or series. These uniforms usually incorporate some form of camouflage or red, white, and blue combination. Some years the design is better than others but that’s not what is important. The important thing is that we are recognizing those who deserve to be recognized.
The San Diego Padres do it the best. Since 2000, the Padres have worn some kind of uniform that represents a branch of the military on every Sunday home game. Most of the time, they represent the Marine Corp or the Navy because both are heavily present in San Diego. This is an awesome tradition. Who cares if the Padres aren’t ever very good? They at the top when it comes to military appreciation.
The NHL has done a solid job representing our veterans as well. While they don’t change the uniform that they wear during the game, many teams will wear a special military themed jersey during warmups, and then auction them off and donate the proceeds to help veterans.
Want one of those camouflage #stlblues warm-up jerseys? Bid now through Nov. 18 to benefit H.E.R.O.E.S. Care, Operation Shower and St. Patrick's Center.
— St. Louis Blues (@StLouisBlues) November 11, 2018
Also, one thing I specifically remember from the many St. Louis Blues games I’ve been to is that they recognize a soldier every game. While I’m sure this happens at every major sporting event (it should be), I mainly remember it at Blues games. It’s happened at every game I’ve been to. Sometimes they do special things for Veteran’s Day. The video below is from the Blues game on Veteran’s Day 2017.
The NFL recognizes the military during the entire month of November. One way they do that is with their military inspired gear. This season they feature Army green apparel with the team logos. The towels that the players wore during the games were also Army green. And of course, the NFL has flyovers. For me, this is one of my favorite things about being at a live, outdoor sporting event. I get chills every time. There’s just something about seeing and feeling the jets fly by.
The NFL also uses #SaluteToService on social media and will donate $25 for every use of it on Veteran’s Day, and $5 for every use between November 1st and November 19th . The money will be donated to several military foundations including the Pat Tillman Foundation, USO, the Wounded Warrior Project, and others.
Up over $5.3M!
Let's get to $6M!!
With every use of #SaluteToService, we're donating to our military partners!
— NFL (@NFL) November 12, 2018
The NBA does a nice job as well representing our veterans as well. They host a wheelchair basketball game for injured service members. The San Antonio Spurs wear special themed jerseys that are usually some sort of camouflage. When it comes down to it, the four major sports leagues do a great job recognizing our military heroes as they should. They deserve it every day. As the saying goes; all gave some, some gave all.
Thank you, Veterans.