Veterans Day was originally Remembrance or Armistice Day, established by the victor nations in commemoration of the end of World War I on November 11, 1918. In the early 1950s it was changed to Veterans Day in the United States in honor of the veterans of all wars.
Written by Canadian surgeon John McCrae, who served with his nation's forces on the Western Front, In Flanders Fields was the most popular poem of the war. McCrae composed it in May 1915 after seeing the death of a friend during the Second Battle of Ypres. Dr. McCrae continued to tend to wounded and injured soldiers until he died of pneumonia in January 1918.
This recital of the poem was recorded last year by Leonard Cohen, who passed away yesterday at the age of 82.