Memorial Day 2011

Memorial Day means, to many, the start of summer.

Many people, it seems, use the time to remember to buy burgers. Or get charcoal. Or pick up some brews.

The rolling of Memorial Day into a three-day weekend has, like the other “Monday holidays,” diluted its significance.

But, not everyone forgets what Memorial Day is about.

The families of those who fought and died — they know what Memorial Day is all about.

The children whose father or mother won’t ever come home from war — they know what Memorial Day is all about.

The wife or husband who won’t ever be able to greet her/his spouse at the airport — they know what Memorial Day is all about.

The grieving parents of a fallen soldier, seaman, airman, or Marine — they know what Memorial Day is all about.

Everyone who lives in this great country of ours — they should know what Memorial Day is all about. And most do.

Go ahead and enjoy the cookout. Enjoy the friends and family you have over. Enjoy the day off work.

Just remember who helped make it possible — and is not here to enjoy it with you.

You should enjoy Memorial Day. But you should also remember.

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  1. Remembering this morning with the parade and ceremony in Litchfield MI. It’s good to be in a place that keeps the memory going. As part of the ceremony I read the names of all the deceased veterans going back to the War Between the States that are buried in the local cemeteries, or that were local folks. Never a HUGE crowd for it, but it’s good for a small town with a long memory.

  2. Pingback: Memorial Day Links: 'The Last Full Measure' - The POH Diaries

  3. I want to say thanks to those in my family I know (My grandfather), those in my family too old for me to know (Great great grandfather; veteran of 2nd Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and Gettysburg), and everyone else.

    Our nation is filled with many vapid ones (We even elect them!), but there are always those of us who can’t possibly forget.

  4. Thanks to all. Our heritage is truly humbling. There was no single “greatest generation;” they are all our greatest generations.

    As many zip off to a day devoid of memoriam, I am reminded of my favorite poem — Tommy by Rudyard Kippling. Here’s a verse:

    Yes, makin’ mock o’ uniforms that guard you while you sleep
    Is cheaper than them uniforms, an’ they’re starvation cheap;
    An’ hustlin’ drunken soldiers when they’re goin’ large a bit
    Is five times better business than paradin’ in full kit.

    Then it’s Tommy this, an’ Tommy that, an’ “Tommy how’s yer soul?”
    But it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll,
    The drums begin to roll, my boys, the drums begin to roll,
    O it’s “Thin red line of ‘eroes” when the drums begin to roll.

  5. Burmashave:
    As a child, I heard an excerpt from “Tommy” in what seems the most unlikely place: The Adventures of Rocky and Bullwinkle.

    A part of a verse was quoted by the mechanical Dudley Do-Right in the Dudley Do-Right of the Mounties segment “Mechanical Dudley.” I had no idea what it was all about.

    Years later, I read the full poem.

  6. 4of7 – that was so very moving. If any of our military or their families are reading IMAO today, I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart for serving our beautiful country. It is because of your ever valiant efforts that we can continue to live under liberty’s wings. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  7. I agree mostly with what you said Basil but there are others who remember. The great grandchildren of those who fought to keep this country great and who came home and taught their children how important civic duty and sacrifice are. Their children who also served time in the military or who became firemen or policemen. Then there are their children who did the same. I am the granddaughter of a Sailor (WWI), the daughter of a Sailor (WWII), the wife of a former Sailor and my son is in the Air Force. There are policemen, firemen and other military personal in our family. We all remember.

    We also have cookouts but they are opened with prayer, in which we thank our Heavenly Father for the sacrifice of all those who died that we might live in a free land. We gather as family and remember not just our own servicemen and women but all servicemen and women. Not just the ones at war today but those who died in all the wars fought to bring this country into being. We are grateful to those who gave the last great measure, their families and loved ones for their gift to this nation. It can never be repaid but it must always be remembered.

    Thank you warriors now and past for all that you have done and continue to do for us. God Bless you, every one.


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