Monday, May 31, 2010

Some Gave All: The True Meaning of Memorial Day

The intense photographer capturing the essence of her scene
The scene above is my daughter Angie photographing head stones in a Concord, Massachusetts cemetery. Concord, as Americans know, is where the Revolutionary War began, and no doubt heroes of that war are buried there.  Since the late 1700s, brave men and women have given their lives so that our country would remain strong and free!

Memorial Day has been commemorated since 1865 with the decorating of soldiers' graves.  The holiday was moved to the last Monday in May in 1971 to ensure a three day weekend. In Utah, there seems to be tremendous confusion on who exactly Americans are to honor on this day, and typically the cemeteries are filled with descendants of those who have died but did not serve in the military.  I've written to my senators and representative on this issue, but they have no easy answers about why the day has evolved this way in our state.  In reality, the sacrifices of many have made it possible for us to express ourselves however we wish on this day, whether that be a Memorial Day tribute to fallen soldiers or placing flowers on a great grandmother's grave.  Or yoga, shopping, house cleaning, picnics, yard work, camping, or any number of other activities.

I salute and honor those who have given all.  May they rest in peace and their families be comforted with the knowledge that they have died with honor.  The video below says it so perfectly.

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