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Veterans Day 2012 Census Facts

A bit of trivia about the annual holiday that recognizes those who fought for our freedom.

Veterans Day, which originated as Armistice Day on Nov. 11, 1919, began on the first anniversary of the end of World War I. In 1926, Congress passed a resolution for an annual observance, and in 1938, Nov. 11 became the annual date. This year, Veterans Day will be observed Monday, Nov. 12.

President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation in 1954 to change the holiday’s name to Veterans Day to honor all those who served in any American war. The day is marked by parades and speeches across the nation, including a national ceremony that takes place at the Tomb of the Unknowns at Arlington National Cemetery.

Veterans

21.5 million — The number of military veterans in the United States in 2011.  Source: 2011 American Community Survey

1.6 million – The number of female veterans in 2011. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

2.3 million – The number of black veterans in 2011. Additionally, 1.2 million veterans were Hispanic; 264,695 were Asian; 153,223 were American Indian or Alaska Native; 27,469 were Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander; and 17.2 million were non-Hispanic white. (The numbers for blacks, Asians, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders, and non-Hispanic whites include only those reporting a single race.) Sources: 2011 American Community Survey:

9.2 million – The number of veterans 65 and older in 2011. At the other end of the age spectrum, 1.8 million were younger than 35. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

When They Served

7.5 million – Number of Vietnam-era veterans in 2011: 5.1 million served during the Gulf War (representing service from Aug. 2, 1990, to present); 1.8 million in World War II (1941-1945); 2.4 million in the Korean War (1950-1953); and 5.4 million in peacetime only. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

51,079 – Number of living veterans in 2011 who served during the Vietnam era and both Gulf War eras and no other period. Other living veterans in 2011 who served during three wars: 43,942 served during World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam era. Living veterans in 2011 who served during two wars and no other period: 876,663 served during both Gulf War eras. 205,205 served during both the Korean War and the Vietnam era. 129,972 served during both World War II and the Korean War. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

Where They Live

3 – Number of states with 1 million or more veterans in 2011. These states were California (1.9 million), Florida (1.6 million) and Texas (1.6 million). Source: 2011 American Community Survey: http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/11_1YR/S2101/0400000US06|0400000US12|0400000US48

14.0% – Percent of people 18 and older in Alaska who were veterans in 2011. The percent of the 18-and- older population who were veterans was 12 percent or more in Maine, Montana, Virginia and Wyoming.  Source: 2011 American Community Survey: http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/ACS/11_1YR/DP02/0400000US02|0400000US23|0400000US30|0400000US51|0400000US56

Education

26.3% – Percent of veterans 25 and older with at least a bachelor’s degree in 2011. In comparison, 28.5 percent of the total population had a bachelor’s degree or higher. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

92.3% – Percent of veterans 25 and older with a high school diploma or higher in 2011, compared with 86 percent of the population as a whole. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

Income

$35,821 – Annual median income of veterans, in 2011 inflation-adjusted dollars, compared with $25,811 for the population as a whole. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

On the Job

9.1 million – Number of veterans 18 to 64 in the labor force in 2011. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

Disabilities

3.5 million – Number of veterans with a service-connected disability rating. Of this number, 810,245 have a rating of 70 percent or higher. Severity of one’s disability is scaled from 0 to 100 percent and eligibility for compensation depends on one’s rating. Source: 2011 American Community Survey

Voting

15.8 million – Number of veterans who voted in the 2008 presidential election. Seventy-one percent of veterans cast a ballot in the presidential election. Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2008

12.4 million – Number of veterans who voted in the 2010 congressional election. Fifty-seven percent of veterans voted in the 2010 congressional election. Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2010

Business Owners

9% – Percentage of all U.S. nonfarm firms that are majority owned by veterans. Veteran-owned firms comprised an estimated 2.4 million of the 27.1 million nonfarm businesses nationwide in 2007. Source: Survey of Business Owners: 2007

75% – Percentage of veteran owners of respondent firms who were 55 or older in 2007. This compares with 37 percent of all owners of respondent firms. Similarly, in 2007, 56 percent of veteran-owned respondent firms with employees reported that their businesses were originally established before 1990. This compares with 39 percent of all employer respondent firms. Source: Survey of Business Owners: 2007

8% – Percentage of veteran owners of respondent firms who were disabled as the result of injury incurred or aggravated during active military service. Source: Survey of Business Owners: 2007

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