Goodbye, Greatest Generation

D Day Veterans

More signs in the ongoing ‘Boomers out, millennials in’ discussion that will soon re-shape global society: at the 40th anniversary of D-Day (30 years ago), there were close to 11 million D-Day veterans still alive. Last week, at the 70th anniversary, it was roughly 1 million. At the 80th anniversary, it’s expected to be about 80,000 or so. (These numbers are for American soldiers.) Here’s how the chart looks over time:

Declining Numbers of Veterans

The Boomers-to-Millennials transition will be huge in any number of aspects: digital natives vs. a generation that hasn’t seen a full-fledged World War vs. what authority and respect mean vs. consumer habits  vs. where people want to live vs. job growth patterns and so much more. That chart above shows you we’re closer than we think we are to that tipping point, even if people are living longer.

Ted Bauer

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