Yesterday’s celebration of Veteran’s Day was particularly poignant, given that it marked the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, which concluded with the Armistice of November 11, 1918, ending the brutal fighting between the Allies and Germany. Also known as the Armistice of Compiègne (the town in northern France where it was signed), the Armistice went into effect at 11 a.m. (Paris time), famously referred to as “the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month.” Tragically, a war that resulted in the death of over 16 million people and introduced the mechanization of warfare, to incomprehensible effect, didn’t guarantee the peace. The rise of fascism across Europe, in Germany, Italy and beyond led to even wider misery and warfare for the next generation. Instability across the globe continues to this day, despite the efforts of so many good people.
So, with history hanging heavy over our heads, we say thank you to those who have served in our armed forces who now work, volunteer, support and participate in the Y. Your service has made our country and world a safer place, in the face of so many forces pushing against peace and security.
At its core, military service is about selfless love of country. I might argue that at the center of one’s love of country is one’s love of community. We are all Americans, but it’s the people with whom we most closely live and interact that most determine our happiness, security and sense of place.
In fact, one’s actual place too often determines so much about not only who we are but how our life plays out. So, that’s why I’m very excited to share with you the next phase of the Y’s “For A Better Us” national advertising campaign. The new TV spot, entitled “One Number Different,” debuted yesterday on ABC’s Good Morning America and will play nationally across a wide range of networks and in social media over the coming months.
Take a look: One Number Different
The Y’s “For A Better Us” tagline is good marketing, but much more importantly it’s the right description of why we exist and what we are trying to do with all of the programs, services and facilities we run. It’s our job to ensure that we create a community in which our zip codes don’t isolate us, but rather cause us to work for a broader and more diverse sense of community. At the Y, we are, in fact, all in this together, inextricably linked, and enriched by striving “For A Better Us” in terms of ourselves, our families, our communities and our country.
So, thanks to those who have fought on battlefields in Europe, Asia, the Middle East and everywhere, for your service and your courage, and for helping us protect the possibility of “For A Better Us.” Thanks to so many in our community who are working everyday “For A Better Us.” And thanks to our associates, our volunteers and our members, who contribute everyday “For A Better Us.”
All the best,
John K. Hoey
President & CEO
The Y in Central Maryland