Monday, May 29, 2017

Memorial Day

As a kid growing up, Memorial Day marked the start of summer. After I joined the National Guard, I was asked to participate in a Memorial Fay observance and be part of the Firing Squad. Hey! I like to shoot, and any excuse, even blanks and a filthy rifle are a good enough reason, so I donned my Khaki's and away we went.
We stood at parade rest and listened to several speeches. I think it was the first time I ever really thought about the human sacrifice that happened to make our free nation possible. It was very sobering.
We have a lot to be thankful for. We are the last bastion of freedom in the world. Socialism and it's counterparts have spread through much of the planet, and as it's failings bring economic blight, they look on us with envy. Not of our system, but of our wealth. They want the jobs and income that a free society has created. Why do you think they push climate change? It is all about stealing our wealth to prop up their failings. Enough about that.
We are that bastion of freedom because men and women had the courage to stand up and fight for it. Today we honor the ones who gave their all for US. That's us and U.S.
In WW1 116,708 American Service Members perished of whom 53,402 were KIA or MIA.
In WW2 407,300 American Service Members perished of whom 291,557 were KIA or MIA
In Korea 36,516 American Service Members perished of whom 33,686 were KIA or MIA
In Vietnam 58,209 American Service Members perished of whom 47,424 were KIA or MIA.
We have had many smaller conflicts, one huge (un)Civil War, and a lot of heart ache on our path as a nation. In total our wars have claimed 1,354,664+ Americans. 666,441+ of them as members of our military. additional deaths in time of peace puch that total still higher.
Every one of those deaths marks a son or daughter lost, a dad or mom never to tell another bedtime story, a husband or wife to never be there to offer comfort or share joy. A loss of a National Treasure because they stood up when others would not.
We take one day to remember them. Their loved ones remember them for a life time.


Gregory said...

Yep. And yesterday I couldn't think of what to say when an acquaintance said something like "what the hell it's just another day! Just roast up some good hotdogs" A little later I cleared him up on the differences between the veterans holidays. I hope it soaked in. I also talked about Dolittles Raiders. Maybe he'll remember.

JeremyR said...

Let us hope.