I get a little weird on Memorial Day. I have no direct relations that are or were in the military. Wait, I take that back. My dad was in the Navy during WWII, but from what I can tell from family stories, he was there at the very end and according to him, “peeled potatoes” on a ship for his brief tour. So, he may have been of the Greatest Generation, but not because of his stellar or lengthy military career. My point is, I have never been personally touched by the life or death of a Military loved one.
So, my extreme reverance on Memorial Day might seem a bit odd. But, it’s there and I’ve learned to embrace it.
I have a tremendous respect for the men and women (and let’s face it-often boys and girls) who choose to serve their country in the ultimate fashion. That respect has only grown in the last 10 years as the chances of being sent to war increase with each passing day and yet these brave citizens continue to report for duty.
This year, I find I have a new found respect for the families of these men and women. For some reason I seem to befriend and inordinate amount of military families. I have seen that their sacrifices are great. They lend us their fathers, mothers, husbands and wives to go fight for our freedom all while tending to their families alone back home. These families work their lives around service times and places with barely a complaint. The families of our military men and women are often the driving force behind the heroic Marines, Rangers, SEALS etc. that we hear about in the news. It is their support that gives them the strength to do what they do.
Today we recognize the men and women who gave their lives for our freedom. And that is how it should be, for it is because of their willingness to give their lives that we continue to live free. So let us use today as a time to give them our respect and recognize that we owe them more than we can ever repay.
But tomorrow, perhaps you can also think of their families. The families of those who have died for our freedom and of those that continue to serve and protect it every single day.
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