Veteran’s Day. This date was chosen to commemorate the ending of WWI, and is a national holiday that honors all veterans. Anyone willing to risk their life and health for their country deserves honor.  No question about it. Canada, the UK, and Australia also celebrate the day.

The government can be a good source of data. I wanted to know more about veterans day and I found some data from the Veteran’s Administration (VA). The data was pretty structured, but also a bit random – lots of census-driven information (age, place of residence, gender, average income etc). Basic demographic information. A few data points I found most interesting where where the veterans served and the branch of the military.

Where US Veterans served (4.3Mb excel download from the VA)

  • Looks like the largest % of current living veterans are from the Vietnam War
  • One quarter of living veterans served in peace time
  • The VA grouped the Iraq War and Afghanistan as “Gulf Era”
  • 300K+ veterans served in multiple wars

VeteransUS Veterans by Branch (1.9Mb excel download from the VA)

  • Unsurprisingly, most veterans served in the Army
  • Reservist and non-defense positions account for about 5% of the total

Veterans by BranchVeterans by State (869Kb excel download from the VA)

  • The top five states (CA, TX, FL, PA, NY) are where 31% of veterans live
  • This file is from expenditure file, so totals are slightly different from previous total

Veterans by StateVeteran Administration Expenditure (869Kb excel download from the VA)

  • Compensation and pension is the largest expense, which makes sense
  • $10 billion seems like a small amount of education and re-training for the veterans.  That is only $470 a year to train, educate and provide better opportunities for veterans
  • Healthcare costs are huge. 38% of total costs, or $45 billion.  This will only go up as the 6 million Gulf War veterans grow older and require (and deserve) care

Veterans ExpenditureSalute to the troops. I would make more tables, but it is 12:50am EST, and I have a 6:45am flight to catch to the client site.  Good night all.

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