By Jesse Church
Aloha my beloved veterans and fellow residents of Molokai, old Jesse here with all the veterans news and upcoming events. When you go to the doctor, you’re always hoping for a clean bill of health. But why do we use that expression? The term has its roots in the Navy. A bill of health is a document a ship provides to port cities, according to Naval history and heritage command. It is proof that sailors are not suffering any epidemic or infection. The document is often unnecessary when travelling between domestic ports, according to the manual for the Medical Department of the U.S. Navy; however, one is needed when sailing to a foreign port. Information required when applying for a bill of health includes the vessel’s name, number of people aboard, captain’s name and destination. The Navy is still required to provide a document stating the health of a ship’s personnel to foreign ports, according to a spokeswoman from the Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery.
Now I’d like to tell you about a holiday that few Americans may be aware of. Armed Forces Day was first celebrated on Saturday, May 20, 1950 by presidential proclamation. Also, Armed Forces Week begins on the second Saturday of May and ends on the third Sunday of May. Both holidays are celebrated annually. In 1950 for the first Armed Forces Day, 10,000 troops and veterans marched past the President in Washington D.C. An estimated 33,000 participants initiated the day in New York City. On May 17, 1952, the New York Times wrote, “This is the day on which we have the welcome opportunity to pay special tribute to the men and women of the armed forces and let them know that we hold them in exceptional esteem.” We need to be more conscious of our debt of honored affection, and show them how much we think of them. So let us all mark May 20 on our calendar and not forget Armed Forces Day.
See if you can correctly answer this question: Where in the Pacific were the Sandwich Islands? The answer will be in the next column.
Memorial Day is on Monday, May 26, so let us not forget to pay homage to those brave Americans who gave their last full measure of devotion so we are able to live as free Americans, something every American should be very proud of. Also, let us not forget our military personnel stationed around the world, especially those men and women in harm’s way. For all they do for us, we send them a big mahalo and to our veterans for all they have done, and the people of Molokai for all the support you have always given them. If old Jesse can help you in any way please give me a call, or if you have something for the column. I hope everyone has a terrific week and remember that old Jesse loves you all dearly. Give me a call at 553-3323. Until next time, mahalo to all my fellow veterans and residents of Molokai.