This story was originally published in the Chicago Tribune Prime Time senior living section.
Whether it’s Veterans Day or any day, our veterans always deserve something special that lets them know we remembered. Here are some gift ideas to show your favorite veteran how much you value his or her service.
1. Military cufflinks
Military insignia cufflinks are perfect for the man who likes to show his pride in a subtle, classy way. These cufflinks are gold-colored metal with the seal of either the Army, Navy, Air Force or Marine Corps in colored ceramic. The cufflinks measure .75 inches in diameter. The cufflinks are offered with a keepsake box that you can personalize for a small fee. Order from ThingsRemembered.com for $52.
2. Women’s stamp mug
This ceramic coffee mug that bears the image of a 1950s 3-cent stamp “Women of Our Armed Services” is a classic. It’s a great reminder that American women have been serving their country for generations. The mug comes in three sizes: 11-ounce, 15-ounce and 20-ounce. The same design also is available on a 16-ounce stainless steel travel mug. Pricing starts at $10.95 for the smallest mug. Order at cafepress.com.
3. Military ship/aircraft phone case
Those who see great beauty and power in military ships and aircraft would love a protective phone case from Fine Art America. There are many exciting shots of aircraft carriers and fighter planes to choose from, printed on a hard shell phone case. Simply snap the wrap-around case onto your phone. When ordering, be sure to select the correct phone model. Phone cases sell for $25 at fineartamerica.com. Note: The website is vast, so click on TECH at the top, then search for the type of ship or aircraft you are interested in.
4. “The Vietnam War” documentary
“The Vietnam War,” by acclaimed historical documentarians Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, is a 10-part, 18-hour look at the Vietnam War. Released in September 2017, it aims to shed light on “one of the most divisive, consequential and misunderstood events in American history.” Order it on DVD for $74.99 from shop.pbs.org. Blu-ray costs $84.99. You also can buy the soundtrack on CD for an additional $19.99.
5. Medal display case
Memorializing a veteran’s service by displaying the medals and ribbons he or she has earned is a visual way to tell their story. It is perfectly legal to buy duplicate military medals and ribbons (except for the Medal of Honor) and display them. USA Military Medals has an online “rack builder” where customers can order custom-built shadow box displays that contain a person’s individual military decorations. Additional options include a photo, name plaque or a folded flag. Prices vary depending on the size of the case and the number of medals, ribbons and options. The medium shadow box pictured measures 12-by-16-by-2-inches with a cherry wood frame and acrylic glass front. It sells for $129 at usamilitarymedals.com. The price includes the case and assembly of the contents, with medals priced separately.