Let us make this clear. This Memorial Day holiday weekend coming up has a very specific meaning that is often confused with Veterans Day, and more commonly with simply a three-day weekend to begin summer vacation time.
Memorial Day was set aside to honor those who have fallen on the battlefields in all of our wars over the history of the nation. It is on which we are all called to remember and to honor the ultimate sacrifices made willingly by the many men and women who “gave their last full measure” to defend the Constitution and all that document enshrines as our natural freedoms as American citizens.
This Memorial Day, if at all possible, take the family to a Memorial Day service in your local area. They are commonly held at local cemeteries dedicated to the military or at cemeteries that have sections dedicated to our deceased veterans, or at some civic memorial in town that honors the military for their service to the nation. Let the younger ones see and get to know the importance of this holiday and the real meaning and purpose behind it.
We have much to be grateful for in this country. All of it has been made possible by those who have fought and died in the cause of freedom throughout our 243 year history.
Remembering the ultimate sacrifices of those who fell in combat helps us to honor that history and to value our responsibilities as citizens.
The Veterans Site hopes that all Americans will take time out this Memorial Day, even if just a few moments, to honor our fallen with their thoughts and prayers, to give thanks for the freedoms we enjoy as a result of those sacrifices made by the few for the many.
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Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site Blog.