Memorial Day is a holiday that usually marks the beginning of summer for most of us in the United States. Our children are experiencing the joyous last days of school before the long summer break. Some of us are traveling for the first vacation of the summer and those that remain home are planning the BBQ cookout.
Take a Moment to Remember
However, in all of our celebrating, let us not forget the reason for the holiday. Let us take a moment to educate the young people in our families about the significance of this holiday. Let us remind them of the sacrifices that were made by very brave men and women in order for us to have the freedoms that we enjoy in our country.
In my life, I have been blessed to visit the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in the Arlington Cemetery in Arlington, VA and I have visited the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, HI. Viewing the many white crosses on the graves in Arlington Cemetery and standing on the sunken wreckage of the USS Arizona which is the final resting place of war heroes were among the most humbling moments of my life. It made the cost of freedom very real for me. I think every American should make a pilgrimage to these memorials as well as others across our country as a way to acknowledge the journey of our heroic warriors.
Find a Way to Honor
This year I have found a new way to honor our fallen heroes. While watching my local news station, they mentioned an organization “Bugles Across America” (http://www.buglesacrossamerica.org) which is a not-for-profit organization that provides live renditions of Taps by a bugler at the final services of veterans. This organization was founded 16 years ago and now has over 5,000 volunteer buglers. It is expected that 500,000 veterans will die every year for the next several years so this volunteer service will be helpful to the grieving families.
I have decided to make an annual donation to this organization as an active method to commemorate Memorial Day. I ask all of you to consider doing the same.
Happy Memorial Day!