What is R.E.D Friday? R.E.D. means Remember Everyone Deployed. It began in 2005 with an email campaign urging civilians back home to wear an article of red clothing on Fridays—a shirt or a tie—as a reminder to Remember Everyone Deployed. These Fridays became known as R.E.D. Friday.
“It’s an inspired way for Americans across the country to show support to the men and women of the U.S. military,” says Jeff Hill of the Patriot Associate Resource Group (ARG). “It raises awareness of those currently deployed to less than stellar conditions or situations. It shows those service members that as a nation we are thankful for their service, and that we support them!”
TDS-U student Denise Rheaume-Babcock said she tries to remember to wear R.E.D. on Fridays and plans to do this during the entire month of May, which is Military Appreciation Month.
“Far too often the men and women of our Armed Forces are forgotten until we need them,” says Denise. “So, this is one way for me to remember those protecting the rights of our country.”
May is filled with holidays that honor the U.S. military, including:
May 1: Loyalty Day is a day set aside for U.S. citizens to reaffirm their loyalty to their country and to remember their heritage. It was started in 1921 and a few communities still celebrate with parades and other ceremonies. It is a legal holiday, but not federal in nature. Read more about Loyalty Day.
May 1-7: Public Service Recognition Week honors the individuals who work as federal, state, county, and local government employees. It is not commonly celebrated, but it is sometimes used to educate the public about the contribution of government workers.
May 6: Military Spouse Appreciation Day is celebrated the Friday before Mother’s Day. The day celebrates the sacrifice and support of military spouses and began in 1984 under President Ronald Reagan.
May 8: Victory in Europe Day is the unconditional surrender of Germany in World War II. On May 8, 1945, there were huge celebrations that swept across the cities of Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, and New York City.
May 21: Armed Forces Day is celebrated the third Saturday of every May. The day honors Americans serving in the military. It was originally designed to replace the days celebrating each individual service, but those days are still observed. The longest-running celebration sponsored by a city is held in Bremerton, Washington. 2012 marked its 64th celebration with a parade.
May 30: Memorial Day lands on the final Monday of May and is the most widely recognized holiday out of the May military-themed observances. It began after the Civil War to remember the soldiers who fell on both sides during the war but grew to commemorate all Americans who died serving in the military.