Remember the Reason For Memorial Day
May 30, 2011

tombofunknown

Revolutionary War 1775 to 1783 4,435 US dead

War of 1812 1812 to 1815 2,260 US dead

Mexican War 1846 to 1848 1,773 US dead

Civil War 1861 to 1865 approx. 600,000 USA/CSA dead

Spanish Amer. War 1898 2,446 US dead

WWI 1917 -1918 116, 516 US dead

WWII 1941-1945 405, 399 US dead

Korean War 1950-1953 36, 914 US dead

Vietnam War 1958-1973 58, 167 US dead

War on Terrorists 2001 to present nearly 3000 sept 11, 2001

Iraq/Afghanistan approx 5900

Normandy Cemetery

Normandy Cemetery

Today, we hear on TV that Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer more than we hear of it’s original meaning.  According to this article concerning The history of Memorial Day, it’s origins go back to the close of the Civil War, though in what many may consider an unexpected manner: 

“Yale University historian David Blight places the first Memorial Day in April 1865, when a group of former slaves gathered at a Charleston, S.C., horse track turned Confederate prison where more than 250 Union soldiers had died. Digging up the soldiers’ mass grave, they interred the bodies in individual graves, built a 100-yd. fence around them and erected an archway over the entrance bearing the words “Martyrs of the Race Course.” On May 1, 1865, some 10,000 black Charleston residents, white missionaries, teachers, schoolchildren and Union troops marched around the Planters’ Race Course, singing and carrying armfuls of roses. Gathering in the graveyard, the crowd watched five black preachers recite scripture and a children’s choir sing spirituals and  ‘The Star-Spangled Banner.'”

 To be sure, there were Memorial Day activities for both the soldiers of the Union and the Confederacy in both the North and South. Eventually, the individual events were combined and in the 20th century became recognized as a day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice in their service to our nation. In your time of barbecue, family gatherings and fun…take a moment to remember those who have made it possible for you to have such a holiday. It is not just a day off from work, but instead is a day of remembrance and thanks to the men, women and families who laid such a sacrifice on the altar of liberty. Snow White and I have attended the services at Zachary Taylor National Cemetery. I don’t know anyone who has died though we did visit the final resting place of her uncle’s cousin who lost his life on December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor. He was just 19. No, we went to pay our respects for all of those in our American brotherhood whose graves remind us that our freedom was paid for by others. We should not take it for granted nor as something that is a right or something that is perpetual. It is a privilege and must be fought for to maintain. Lest we forget….

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Nobility of Purpose: Sacrificing Life For a Cow or Sacrificing Life For World Civilization
June 6, 2009

1981_train_accidentOn This Date In History:    A Case For The Cows
On this date in 1981…a train pulling cars full of people was tootling down the tracks on a rainy day in India. The engineer was Hindu, who hold cows as sacred. Just before he got to a bridge that crossed a rain swollen river, a cow appeared on the tracks. The engineer braked hard…too hard. The back half of the train with cars full of passengers slid off the tracks and into the river. Though many bodies were never found, it is estimated that 600 people died that day. Thank goodness the cow lived.
These Americans Helped Free a Continent

These Americans Helped Free a Continent

Ike Had a Tough Decision

Ike Had a Tough Decision

A Case For Civilization

On June 6, 1944, the allies of World War II made the largest amphibious landing ever attempted on the area of the coast of France known as Normandy. The allies were successful largely because the good guys’ meteorologists were better than the Nazi meteorologists.  The weather had been atrocious causing the allies to postpone the invasion.  They had created an armada of over 5000 ships of various sizes and thousands of troops stationed in England.  June 6 was the last day that the moon would be right for weeks and it would be almost impossible to maintain the number of troops and supplies in England and also maintain secrecy.  The Nazis thought the weather was so bad there was no way for a landing so Rommel went home to his wife’s birthday party and Hitler took a sleeping pill ordering him not to be disturbed.
 
Landing Map for D-Day

Landing Map for D-Day

Meanwhile, the American weather men said there was a brief window of opportunity to get it done.   See, the allies had an advantage in that weather generally comes to Europe from the west, north or south.  Well, the allies controlled those areas so they had data.  The Germans were to the east and so had limited information.  Remember, there were no satellites and the only observations that the Germans could get would be from their ships, submarines or planes with some data available from neutral nations.  But, by 1944, the Luftwaffe was greatly depleted and spent most of its time over the mainland defending “Fortress Europe.”  The Nazi  surface navy wasn’t ever very formidable and much of what had been in service had been destroyed by the allies, mainly the Royal Navy.  Now, they did still have submarines  but they too were spending more and more time under water as they were getting their asses handed to them and probably didn’t have too much time to make weather reports when they did surface.  Even when they did, it was only surface observations as I doubt they took the time to launch a weather balloon. 

So, General Eisenhower gambled and won and so did the good guys. So, chalk one up for the weather man!!
Omaha Beach June 6, 1944

Omaha Beach June 6, 1944

Today, we have public leaders running around making speeches in which they apologize to other nations for America’s actions.  They do not mention how we’ve come to the rescue in recent years of the Muslim population in the former Yugoslavia.  It was the Americans who led the rescue of the Islamic country of Kuwait.  They don’ t mention that it was the Americans who came to the aid of the Muslims in Afghanistan against the Soviets.  Some Brits protest against America for some of our foreign policy, yet they either forget or are ignorant of the fact that it was America who provided the armaments and raw materials and food to sustain the island when Churchill and the nation bravely stood alone against Hitler.   The French complain about our actions in Iraq but forget it was the Americans who took the toughest route on D-Day at Omaha Beach and took the lead in liberating France from Nazi rule. 
Vichy Leader Pierre Laval (with Hitler) was executed after the War

Vichy Leader Pierre Laval (with Hitler) was executed after the War

It should be noted that many of their French countrymen collaborated with the Nazis and set up the Vichy Government as a puppet to Hitler, though many defiantly resisted both the Germans and the Vichy Government.  It was Americans who fought and died at Anzio in the effort to liberate Italy.  It was the Americans who turned the tide in World War I to end the devastating stalemate that cost millions of lives in Europe. 

This American Life Ended 65 years ago today, so that others may live

This American Life Ended 65 years ago today, so that others may live

Truth is, it would be a very different and worse off world without the American soldier.  It would be a very different world without American efforts to provide hope and liberty to the oppressed, often times sacrificing its blood and treasure to make that a reality to these foreign nations.  It would be a very different world without American aid in disasters.  Our leaders fail to remind the Middle East that it was America who took the lead in providing relief to a large Muslim population that suffered after the Tsunami a few years ago.  Improved health, sanitation, lifestyle and innovation has come to the world because of America.  Yeah, we make some mistakes. But we do a lot of good.  Those crosses and stars of David that are on the cliffs of Normandy Beach are for men who gave their lives so that others could be free, not so future leaders could tell the rest of the world how bad we are or have been.
An Extra Blanket Needed?

An Extra Blanket Needed?

Weather Bottom Line: A couple of days ago I said that I wouldn’t be surprised to see some temps in the 40’s on Friday morning and at least Brandenburg and Patoka Lake made the cut.  With high pressure building in there will be clear skies and no wind to speak of so I think more people will have a morning wake-up in the 40’s.  Louisville will probably be in the low 50’s.  We warm up to the low to mid 80’s on Saturday, mid to upper 80’s on Sunday. Most folks will be around 90 or so on Monday. Next chance for rain shows up Monday night or early Tuesday. 

Put Down the Beer and Barbecue and Remember the Meaning of Memorial Day
May 25, 2009

tombofunknown

Revolutionary War 1775 to 1783                      4,435          US dead

War of 1812  1812 to 1815                                       2,260         US dead

Mexican War 1846 to 1848                                    1,773         US dead

Civil War   1861 to 1865                approx.   600,000 USA/CSA dead

Spanish Amer. War 1898                                      2,446           US dead

WWI  1917 -1918                                                 116, 516          US dead

WWII 1941-1945                                                405, 399         US dead

Korean War 1950-1953                                      36, 914         US dead

Vietnam War 1958-1973                                   58, 167          US dead

War on Terrorists  2001 to present           nearly 3000 sept 11, 2001

                              Iraq/Afghanistan               approx 4900

 

Normandy Cemetery

Normandy Cemetery

Today, we hear on TV that Memorial Day is the unofficial start of summer more than we hear of it’s original meaning.  The history of Memorial Day began at the close of the Civil War.  There were Memorial Day activities for both the soldiers of the Union and the Confederacy.  Eventually, they were combined and in the 20th century became recognized as a day to remember those who made the ulitmate sacrifice in their service to our nation.  In your time of barbecue, family gatherings and fun…take a moment to remember those who have made it possible for you to have such a holiday.  It is not just a day off from work, but instead is a day of rememberance and thanks to the men, women and families who laid such a sacrifice on the alter of liberty.  Snow White and I attended the services at Zachary Taylor National Cemetery.   I don’t know anyone who has died though we did visit the final resting place of her uncle’s cousin who lost his life on December 7, 1941 at Pearl Harbor.  He was just 19.  No, we went to pay our respects for all of those in our American brotherhood whose graves remind us that our freedom was paid for by others.  We should not take it for granted nor as something that is a right or something that is perpetual.  It is a privelidge and must be fought for to maintain.  Lest we forget….