As Veterans Day approaches, two Pendleton blankets deserve some special attention.
First, the Grateful Nation blanket honors the sacrifice of brave men and women who have defended freedom throughout the history of the United States of America.
Each colored stripe represents a service ribbon awarded to veterans of historical conflicts in which our country has engaged:
- World War II Asiatic Pacific Campaign
- World War II Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign
- Korean Service
- US Vietnam Service
- Southwest Asia Service (Gulf War)
- War on Terrorism
Sales of this blanket help support The Fisher House® Foundation, which provides residences near major military and VA medical centers for the families of ill or wounded service members. For several years, this blanket pattern was available as a vest. Pendleton was proud to present these vests to the living WWII veterans who were honored in Washington, DC.
Another blanket that honors a specific group of United States military veterans is The Code Talker blanket.
This design honors the crucial role played by Navajo servicemen in defending our country during World War II by developing a code that could not be cracked, based on the Navajo language.
The history of the code talkers is more riveting than any fiction. You can learn more at their official site, and at other sites that tell this fascinating story, which was told in the popular movie “Windtalkers”. This blanket was officially retired as of 2012, but the WWII Navajo Code Talkers are still alive and will be honored this Veterans Day.
They don’t have a Pendleton blanket, but the Choctaw Code Talkers of WWI will be honored along with the Navajo Code Talkers of WWII at Maxwell Air Force Base as part of November, the National American Indian Heritage Month.
And the Smithsonian will feature exhibits on the Code Talkers from both of the Great Wars. We have no word on whether or not the blanket will be included in this exhibit, but it has been featured in papers and exhibits about the Code Talkers since its introduction. That makes us happy, as these blankets have been woven in America with special pride.
We salute and thank those who fight for our country. The dedication and sacrifice of our military should be honored not just on Veterans Day, but every day.