Memorial Day

Arlington National Cemetery

Memorial Day, and Memorial Day Weekend, for my family isn’t a time for parties and celebrations. It is a time for reflection. We will often gather to watch the Memorial Day Concert from Washington DC. For one evening, at least, politics are put aside to honor the men and women who have answered the call and made the ultimate sacrifice for this country.

Last night was no different. Once again, I watched the concert and listened to the stories of bravery, brotherhood and sacrifice. I cried for those men and women and for their families. Even as I did, I felt pride to know my son chose to follow the family tradition of serving in the military.

But this isn’t about my son. This is about those men and women who didn’t run to Canada or use family connections to avoid the draft. This is about those who made the ultimate sacrifice so our country can continue to thrive. Their sacrifice, and the sacrifices of their families, are why we still have the freedoms we enjoy.

Then I get angry. Angry because of how so many work so hard to tear down the very foundations upon which our country is built. Angry because they take for granted that there will always be those willing to sacrifice for their freedom, even if those they sacrifice for are doing their best  to destroy our nation. Where would these naysayers be without the soldiers and sailors, the Marines and airmen, who step up to the line to stand between our nation and its enemies?

I won’t say “thank you” to those of you who have served or who have watched your loved ones serve. I will say you are what help make– and keep — this country great. I honor your service and the service of all those who have stepped up to answer the call. My thanks and my heart goes out to those who have sacrificed so much for our country and to their families.

In Flanders Fields
by John McCrea

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place, and in the sky,
The larks, still bravely singing, fly,
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead; short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe!
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high!
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

About the author

Writer, proud military mom and possessed by two crazy cats and one put-upon dog. Writes under the names of Amanda S. Green, Sam Schall and Ellie Ferguson.

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