For many people, Memorial Day means a three day weekend that marks the official beginning of summer. However, Memorial Day is much more than that.  Memorial Day is a day to remember and honor the brave soldiers who have gone before us, giving their lives, to protect and defend our United States of America.

Although many cities claim to have birthed Memorial Day, history gives credit to Gen. John A. Logan who sought to honor fallen soldiers with a day dedicated to their memory.  That first Memorial Day occured on May 30, 1868.  It was put forward in General Order No. 11 and was not about partisan politics, but about erasing lines of division and uniting as a nation to honor soldiers whose lives had been lost.  President Lynden Johnson made it an official national holiday in 1966.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.  It doesn’t matter whether or not you agree with a war (past or present), we should always support our fellow Americans who are willing to lay down their lives for our freedeoms, for you and me, for our children and their futures.   

Do you know someone whose beloved soldier never returned?  If so, I hope you’ll reach out to them with a spoken or written word to let them know you appreciate the sacrifice their loved one made.   Do you know a veteran?  Express your sympathies to them for the soldiers they’re remembering on this day.  Tell your children about the importance of this national holiday.  Is there something you can do memorialize the memory of a loved one?  Or help someone else to memorialize the memory of their loved one? 

We cherish too, the Poppy red

That grows on fields where valor led,

It seem to signal to the skies

That blood of heroes never dies.

By:  Moina Michaels 1915

Personally, I give prayers of thanks for the soldiers whose lives are now marked with a cross or other marker in the ground.  May I always feel humbled by the sacrifices they made and respectful for lives that were willingly given to protect yours and mine.  May God bless their souls and the loved ones they left behind. 

Recommended related sites:  for more information on the history of Memorial Day