It's Veterans Day, formally known as Armistice Day. The name was changed to Veterans Day in 1919 and declared a legal holiday in 1938.
Prior to the all volunteer armed forces that we have now, there used to be an active induction program commonly referred to as the draft because it was at a draft board that you would register.
Millions of men served as a result of having been drafted (women could serve but were not drafted). You would receive a letter about 3 months before your scheduled departure date that began "Greetings". It then went on to explain you've been inducted in the United States Army and then it gave you instructions as to the next steps.
In those days if you weren't a student or married, being drafted was an expected right of passage. Men took it as a given that they were going to serve. They didn't whine, cry, complain, run or hire lawyers. They just went, did their two years and returned.
I often hear veterans say they should bring back the draft. I'm not so sure. I'm content to let the all volunteer system let itself work.
At any rate, at 11 A.M. this morning it is customary to take a second or two to quietly reflect on the sacrifice made by so many. It's not too much to ask.