Veterans Day – “The day the duck hunters died”
Veterans day (formerly “Armistice Day” from 1919 to 1954) is a national holiday that serves as a reminder of incomprehensible debt owed to all our veterans. There is no great party to be had on Veterans Day, it is a day for reverence, respect, and thank yous to be paid to our veterans. Here is an anecdotal story about Armistice Day in 1944. It should serve as a look at where we have come from as a civilization, country, and particularly outdoorsman.
The Day the Duck Hunters Died
November 11th 1944 has been referred to as the “Armistice Day Blizzard” or more darkly as “The day the duck hunters died”. What started as a reportedly 55 degree day with a west wind quickly developed into one of the worst blizzards the region had ever seen. The storm was centered on the upper Midwest states of Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota and Illinois. This area of the country was and continues to be extremely popular for waterfowl hunting. Many waterfowl hunters eager to capitalize on the cold front were hit with a storm they were ill-prepared for. Hunters were stranded on the Mississippi River, lakes, and marshes in the area as wind picked up and temperatures dropped. Snow and wind cut through the hunting clothes of the day and sadly many hunters did not make it home.
Although we have come a long way technologically from that time, we still lose hunters to unforeseen weather. One thing technology cannot prevent is poor planning. Anyone venturing off pavement should leave a loose plan at home, bring emergency supplies, and have the mental acuity to pull the plug when conditions are unsafe.
FarWide takes today to remember our Veterans who fought for our freedoms. Of particular importance to our company and users is the freedom to pursue our passions for the outdoors. This season remember “The Day the Duck Hunters Died” and be responsible and safe with all your freedoms.