Memorial Day is our nation’s time to pay tribute to those who paid the ultimate price for our freedom. At least that is what it is supposed to be. However, these are not normal times. The American flag is considered by some to be offensive when flown on our own soil. Patriotism is seen as a threat to our republic. And worst of all, those who fought and died for our freedom are being dismissed and forgotten.
I do not share these views. In fact, I’m willing to bet that the vast majority of our nation still believe in our country and that those who perished to guarantee our freedom were heroes. Memorial Day is celebrated to recognize these men and women’s sacrifice and what it means to all of us. This is not the time for politics, it is a time for honor and remembrance.
The freedoms we enjoy as United States citizens came at a horrific cost, the blood, flesh, bone and souls of American service members. While they all gave their lives in service to their country, each of their lives were unique and valued. Each had their own family, friends and community that was forced to go on without them.
Our lost service members’ remains are buried in our national and state veterans cemeteries, and countless city, town and private cemeteries around our country. Many are interred on foreign soil, in the ocean or scattered to the winds. The final resting places of others are known only to God.
In 2000, Congress passed the National Moment of Remembrance Act. It encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day for a minute of silence to remember and honor those who have died in service to the nation. I ask you to please consider this in your own plans this Memorial Day.
In the end, the most important thing we can do is to not let these brave men and women’s sacrifice be in vain. We must continue to cherish and protect the rights, the freedom and the country given to us.
For all of us who live free for your service, we celebrate your memory, we honor your sacrifice, and we shall never forget.
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