Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 107 Part 3.djvu/636

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107 STAT. 2574 PROCLAMATION 6503—NOV. 4, 1992 two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and seventeenth. GEORGE BUSH Proclamation 6503 of November 4, 1992 National Women Veterans Recognition Week, 1992 By the President of the United States of America A Proclamation More than one million American women are veterans of our Armed Forces, and as we celebrate the end of the Cold War and the promise of increasing cooperation and peace in the world, it is fitting that we offer a special salute to each of them. In peacetime and in time of peril, and in a variety of demanding roles, women service members have demonstrated great skill, sacrifice, and devotion to freedom. Although World War n marked the first, large-scale entry of women into the Armed Forces, it was not the first conflict to test the courage and patriotism of American women. As early as our Nation's War for Independence, the contributions of women proved to be essential to the preservation of liberty. Women served as suppliers, scouts, and muses for the Continental Army, and later, when our Nation faced a bitter war between the States, women again answered the call to duty. The extraordinary efforts of hundreds of women nurses during the Spanish-American War led to the establishment of the Army Nurse Corps in the early years of this century, and by World War I, the Navy and Coast Guard were also enlisting women. Women achieved full military status during World War II, and tens of thousands served with distinction as members of the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps (WACS), Women Accepted for Voluntary Emergency Service (WAVES), and the Women Airforce Service Pilots. This week we remember, especially, those who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. Shortly after World War II, the Women's Armed Services Integration Act authorized permanent status for women in the military, and since that time, women have continued to amass an impressive record of service and sacrifice. In Korea, Vietnam, Panama, and the Persian Gulf, America's service women have excelled as active duty and Reserve members of our Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. As we salute women veterans for their contributions to om* national seciu'ity and to the defense of freedom aroimd the globe, we also recognize their continuing contributions in civilian life. In keeping with the highest traditions of generations of former military personnel, many women veterans are actively engaged in efforts to improve their communities and to promote a strong America. The Congress, by Public Law 102-517, has designated the week of November 8 through November 14, 1992, as "National Women Veterans Recognition Week" and has requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this week.