The men and women who serve in the US military may wear different uniforms depending on their branch of service, but they are unified in protecting our country. They come from diverse backgrounds and go on to live equally varied lives with different goals and aspirations as veterans.
That unity and diversity are the themes of Google's Doodle on Thursday marking Veterans Day in the US, the day when Americans pause to honor and give thanks to the individuals who've served in the US military as part of a bigger team. Originally known as Armistice Day, which marked the end of hostilities in World War I, Veterans Day is observed every Nov. 11.
The Doodle shows members of each of the six branches of the US military, men and women side by side, wearing both the uniform of their time in the service and the clothing of the lives they live after their military careers have ended, including a doctor, a pastry chef and a disabled veteran.
Like previous tributes Google has dedicated to Veterans Day, the vivid images in this year's Doodle were created by a guest artist who served in the US military. Steven Tette, a US Army veteran from Phenix City, Alabama, said it was important that his oil-based painting accurately represented the uniforms worn by his brothers and sisters in service.
"As a US Army veteran, I am very familiar with Army dress codes," Tette told Google in discussing his art. "But I had to spend many hours learning the uniforms of the five other services" -- the Air Force, Marines, Navy, Coast Guard and Space Force.
"'Getting it right' is very important to me," he said, adding that he was inspired in his art by the varied forms of patriotism he's encountered.
"I wanted to display the diversity of the American veteran and how our lives as civilians are just as diverse," he said. "However, I primarily wanted to show the unity of the figures.
"I want them to be seen as one."