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Military Traditions

May 27, 2021 By Spike Flertzheim

Why We Wear Red on Fridays

A new resident asked me the other day, “Why do we wear red on Fridays here at Paradise Valley Estates?” The short answer is “To honor our serving troops,” but here is the story behind that terse reply.

It started in mid-2007, after Betty and I moved to PVE and were befriended by Dick and Bette Brown. As frequent dinner partners, I noticed that Dick always wore a red blazer on Fridays. When I asked him why, he said that it was to honor our troops, but he had forgotten the details.

Shortly thereafter, I happened to receive an email outlining a national effort by veterans
to have everyone wear red on Fridays to show support for our troops serving our country around the globe. It explained that red was an unusual apparel color and would be highly visible.

Parenthetically, I might add, red is also the color of bravery in heraldry, signifying the blood of fallen heroes. That is why red is found in the flags of so many nations, including our own. Wearing red to honor our troops sounded like an excellent idea, given the military background of so many of our residents.

Accordingly, an article was published in Elysian Fields and notices were placed in the Friday Flash urging everyone to wear something red on Fridays. Many of our residents joined in and now it is a sort of an informal PVE tradition. By wearing something red all day each Friday, we not only remind ourselves of the troops serving our country, but we also are visible symbols silently reminding others as we interact with our surrounding communities.

In my opinion, we should continue this tradition even after all our troops are out of Iraq and Afghanistan for there still will be many service people stationed around the world in lonely places, guarding our freedom. So, if you are not currently wearing red on Fridays, consider joining those of us who do.

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