As much of the nation prepares to celebrate Mother’s Day on Sunday, there is another significant day on the calendar before that. National Military Spouse Appreciation Day is celebrated on the Friday before Mother’s Day in May.  This year it will be observed on Friday, May 10th, 2019.

The day takes on a special significance in Riverside County. An estimated 132,000 Veterans call it home. Riverside County has the third highest Veteran population in the state and is the host of two major military installations; various National Guard facilities and installations; and state and federal reserve facilities and installations.

On this one day each year the nation pauses to honor the contributions and sacrifices made by military spouses. Their commitment and support help to keep the country safe.  America’s military spouses are the backbone of the families who support our troops during mission, deployment, reintegration and reset. Military spouses are silent heroes who are essential to the strength of the nation, and they serve our country just like their loved ones according to MilitaryBenefits.Info.

In celebration of the set-aside day, the armed forces have special events and programs to inform, honor, and recognize military spouses around the world. Events range from spouse appreciation luncheons to educational workshops, and spouse employment fairs that pay tribute to military spouses.

In 1984, President Ronald Reagan recognized the importance of spousal commitment to the readiness and well-being of military members with Proclamation 5184, dated April 17, 1984.  Congress officially made Military Spouse Appreciation Day part of National Military Appreciation Month in 1999.  Subsequently, the Department of Defense standardized the date by declaring the Friday before Mother’s Day every year as “Military Spouse Appreciation Day” to show appreciation for the sacrifices of military spouses.

Following is a portion of Barack Obama’s Presidential Proclamation honoring the day of appreciation in 2016.

Serving alongside our Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines, and Coast Guardsmen, our Nation’s military families give of themselves and give up their time with their loved ones so we may live safely and freely. Few Americans fully understand the sacrifices made by those who serve in uniform, but for spouses of service members across our country, the costs of the freedom we too often take for granted are known intimately. On Military Spouse Appreciation Day, we honor the spouses of those who have left behind everything they know and love to join our Nation’s unbroken chain of patriots, and we recommit to giving military spouses the respect, dignity, and support they deserve… –

You may read the entire proclamation here.

Image Sources

  • Military Spouse Appreciation Day: Shutterstock