"Today, we honor the men and women who make the greatest sacrifice by risking their lives to defend this country's freedom," Easley said. "Approximately 120,000 active duty personnel are stationed on North Carolina bases -- our United States Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard units. They continually stand ready to protect us at home and abroad.
"The support for our troops and their families has been terrific, and I hope North Carolina remains committed to being the most military-friendly state in the nation."
On Aug. 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days, stemming from the unification of the Armed Forces under one department -- the Department of Defense.
The proclamation reads:
ARMED FORCES DAY 2003 BY THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA A PROCLAMATION WHEREAS, on Aug. 31, 1949, Secretary of Defense Louis Johnson announced the creation of an Armed Forces Day to replace separate Army, Navy and Air Force Days, stemming from the unification of the Armed Forces under one department -- the Department of Defense; and WHEREAS, North Carolina continues a noble tradition of helping to provide for the "common defense" of our Nation; and WHEREAS, United States Army, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard units continually stand ready at North Carolina bases to defend freedom both here and abroad; and WHEREAS, Fort Bragg, Pope Air Force Base, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune, Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, Marine Corps Air Station New River and Elizabeth City Coast Guard Support Station, as well as numerous North Carolina National Guard and Armed Forces Reserve Training Centers, have long served our State and Nation, in peace and in war; and WHEREAS, with approximately 120,000 active duty personnel stationed on North Carolina bases North Carolina is the most military-friendly state in the Nation; and WHEREAS, it is fitting that we pay special tribute to those soldiers, sailors, Airmen and Marines whose bravery and dedication guard the freedom of this nation and the peace of the world; NOW, THEREFORE, I, MICHAEL F. EASLEY, Governor of the State of North Carolina, do hereby proclaim May 17, 2003, as "ARMED FORCES DAY" in North Carolina and urge our citizens to join me in this worthwhile observance.
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