It is Memorial Day…just saying the two words conjures up different images and feelings for everyone. My brother Ben (Vietnam Marine- two purple hearts) said that this would be a tough weekend for him…too many images assault him and catch him off guard on Veterans Day and Memorial Day. For many veterans…I think this holds true.
What a terrible sacrifice our young soldiers experienced…for many at such tender ages (throughout all the wars our country has seen)…these young warriors experienced tragedy beyond description… and for those who survived…leaving many emotionally scarred.
In a way Memorial Day is a day about beginnings and endings that start new beginnings. On the calendar Memorial Day unofficially ends spring and begins summer. For all of us, the recipients of the freedom others have sacrificed for us, we take pleasure on this day as a kick-off celebration to summer and an long-awaited ending to school.
Of course, like everything else since March…this Memorial Day is different. It also expands in appreciation for our newest warriors...the front-line fighters and first responders who put their lives in jeopardy fighting to help others get through this pandemic.
Many of the following job-related heroes today are listed on my new garden flag that I touch gently every time I enter the garden! Thank you!
(I include in this list everyone who has listened to the medical experts and done their part to contain the virus…staying home, wearing masks, socially distancing, etc.)
It really does take a village…a global village…to fight the coronavirus as human beings united in the preservation of life.
Today I hope everyone enjoys special moments of happiness and appreciation for the daily things we do in life…as seen in the title visual today. Ask any soldier what they dream about in combative situations and it is just these types of mental memory pictures…returning home to family, cutting the grass, picnics, playing with the dog, cooking, walking, eating watermelon, laughing, loving, and praying together.
So even if you are not able to be with loved ones over this Memorial Day weekend…I hope you are able to communicate via phone, internet or whatever other means you have to take time and let a loved one know they are always in your memory…every day is a personal Memorial Day to them.
When Ben finally was able to put down his feelings and thoughts concerning his experiences about Vietnam through his book Grace Under Fire…one of his favorite memories was a chocolate birthday cake arriving from home, from mom, that miraculously landed on his birthday, July 26, in the jungles of Vietnam. Ben said it tasted like mom had just taken it out of the oven.
A Big Shout-Out to the Surviving Veterans of WWII…as this year marks the 75th anniversary of the end of the war. 16 million Americans were actively engaged in the war…of those just a few over 300,000 are still alive today.
I lit my Blessed Candle (Carrie gave me) last night to remember all the brave men and women who put others first before their own well-being….heroes of every description! How blessed we are for their complete generosity…then and now!
So until tomorrow…men and women risk their lives so families can continue living a life of freedom that allows personal choices in this country. Memorial Day always leads back to FAMILY! Thank you Ben for your sacrifice!
“Today is my favorite day” Winnie the Pooh
*** At 3:00 today pause and listen to hear if a bugler in your neighborhood is playing Taps. CBS reporter, Steve Hartman has started an initiative called Taps Across America for a special tribute to veterans across our country.
(CBS News “On the Road” correspondent Steve Hartman is teaming up with retired Air Force bugler Jari Villanueva to keep the spirit of the holiday alive…even if community celebrations might be cancelled.)
***Hartman and Villanueva are asking veterans, musicians, teachers, and students of all abilities and ages to sound Taps on their front lawns, porches, and driveways at 3 p.m. local time Monday, May 25th…TODAY!
I have my fingers crossed that we have a bugler in Miler…if you do hear Taps play…please go out on your lawn, face the music, and stand at attention, as a gesture of respect for those who gave the ultimate sacrifice to freedom.