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….

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….