Today, November 11th, is Veterans Day. This day is observed annually to honor our military veterans. November 11th was chosen as Veteran’s Day as it is generally regarded as the end of “the war to end all wars.” World War I – at the time known as “The Great War” – officially ended with the signing of the Treaty of Versailles. However, the fighting actually ceased seven months earlier when an armistice, or temporary cessation of hostilities, between the Allied nations and Germany went into effect on the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month – November 11, 1918.
At Brooks Kushman, we have a few veterans in our mix that we wanted to honor on this day. Jason Burnette and Gary Smith, thank you for your service.
One program we also wanted to highlight is the VA’S Technology Transfer Program (TTP). The TTP’s mission is to facilitate the commercialization of VA inventions to benefit Veterans and the American public. This program assists researchers and other VA employees by licensing protected VA technologies to companies able to make and sell the inventions to the public. The program’s lawyers help patent VA’s inventions. This program also helps bring these discoveries closer to the public by supporting the creation of a working prototype and by consulting on pathways to commercialization.
In 2017 at the 100th anniversary of the United States Entering WWI, the National Inventors Hall of Fame Museum released a new exhibit titled “Visionary Veterans” honoring five World War I veterans and National Hall of Fame Inductees whose innovations made an impact on our world. Featured in this exhibit:
- Edwin Howard Armstrong was enlisted in the Signal Corps when the U.S. entered WWI. Due to his time in the war, he was inspired to create a better method for pinpointing aircraft. As an inventor, he was known for his creation of FM radio.
- Arnold Beckman enlisted in the Marines towards the end of the war. His signature invention was the pH meter, helping to give scientists a ready-made instrument rather than spending time constructing necessary tools for their job.
- Eugene Houdry served in the French army as a lieutenant in the tank corps, during which he was seriously injured, winning the Croix de Guerre award for his heroism in battle. As an inventor, he discovered a method for cracking low-grade crude oil into high-test gasoline; developed a process for producing synthetic rubber; and invented the catalytic converter for cleaning automobile exhaust.
- Frederick McKinley Jones enlisted in the Army upon America’s entrance into the war. During his time in France, his superiors saw his aptitude for engineering and made him an electrician. During this time, he created a mobile refrigeration unit that served as a vital part of the war allowing them to keep blood, food, and medications fresh. He was post-humorously granted the first National Medal of Technology, the first awarded to an African American (you might have remembered him as one featured for BK’s Black History Month).
- Alfred Loomis enlisted in the Army when America entered the war, serving quickly as captain. During his time serving, he was credited for his innovations, such as Long Range Navigation, a radio navigation system for marine and flight navigators to determine a vessel’s location.
History of Veteran’s Day by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Office of Public and Intergovernmental Affairs