What is Memorial Day.  Is it backyard barbeques with family and friends?  Is it party time?  Is it a long holiday weekend away with your spouse?  It is all of these, but so much more.

Memorial Day’s origins stem from Decoration Day from the Civil War which memorialized the union soldiers who were killed during the Civil War.  During that time, southern Confederate wives also celebrated by decorating the graves of fallen confederate soldiers.

Starting in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, the holiday was celebrated as Memorial Day but truly came to prominence after World War II.  The name Memorial Day was officially federalized in 1967.

So what does all of this mean for you and me as US citizens.  It means that we are grateful for the millions of soldiers  who have sacrificed all so that their loved ones and all United States citizens could live under the freedoms afforded by the Constitution.  Mothers and fathers gave sons and daughters to the republic.  These citizen soldiers fought and died for us.  My son-in-law just returned, thankfully, from his third deployment in the last 5 years.  He fought for freedom and came back to us.  However, many thousands of his fellow soldiers will never return.  What should our response be?  Gratitude, humility, support, love, admiration.

This Memorial Day of 2012, let’s do more than enjoy our family.  Let’s thank those who serve; remember those who died; and know that freedom is not free.

  I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free, And I won’t forget the ones who died who gave that right to me, And I gladly stand up next to you and defend her still today, Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land God Bless the U.S.A.”           by Lee Greenwood

God Bless America!  God bless all who serve and have served in our armed forces!  God bless the families who lost loved ones defending our great nation!  God bless the USA!!!

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