From: T.M. Schoewe
Do you realize only one day is dedicated to honor the ultimate sacrifice made by our fellow Americans? We call it Memorial Day! It is coming up this Monday, the 27th of May. There is a lot to remember! Especially this year!
We have been doing this 145 years and this year marks the 150th anniversary of our great civil war, and especially the costliest fought Battle of Gettysburg. The magnitude of that war and the 498,000 dead is hard for us contemporary ones to comprehend. Especially, Gettysburg gives us pause to remember all of Americaís wars, whether large or small. This year 2013, is the anniversary of the War of 1812, the 50th of Vietnam and the 10th of Iraq. With the severity of World War II and the Korean War, it all adds up to over 1 million five hundred thousand plus lives!
Many Americans have lost their lives since our Revolutionary war. Along with the War of Independence, Americans have fought and died in the War of 1812, the Mexican War, Civil War, Spanish American War, World War I and World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam, Panama, Grenada, Somalia, Bosnia, Iraq, and Afghanistan. And many have lost their lives from suicide bombers in barracks and embassies around the world, and most recently in Benghazi. Perhaps we should mention the Twin Towers, which did not directly involve the lives of our military men and women, but is nonetheless part of this now nameless war which still continues and has come to us again on our own soil.
For those of us who actually served in uniform and of the older generation no reminders are necessary. But our numbers are rapidly dwindling. So it is necessary for us to instill in our younger Americans REVERENCE for the ultimate sacrifice Americans have made to preserve the freedom and liberty we enjoy or may take for granted in this country.
Last week, we went to the VA hospital in Minneapolis; such a visit would do us all a lot of good in giving us pause to think of all the victims of war and what this good country is doing for the wounded warriors who are still with us. The amputee wards, the ruptured eardrum cases, the mentally disturbed with post traumatic stress and the physically wrecked will give you cause to pause about the cost of freedom and give you reason for Memorial Day.
So today, and especially on Memorial Day, think of those who made the supreme sacrifice and those still in our VA and other hospitals and even back home in our communities recuperating and trying to readjust. Thankfully, rededicate yourself to our country and turn to God in the Savior of all mankind and implore heavenís grace that the sacrifice of human lives and the suffering with which our freedom has been protected and shared in other parts of the globe may not be in vain.
Monday, whether golfing, fishing or visiting friends and family, pause to remember those who gave their lives or those who still may suffer, and offer up your thanks! Enjoy your freedom! Always promote and protect your freedom!
P.S. We close with this note from a retired Navy Chief:
Lest we forget what our nation stands for, and that grand old Flag,
Letís solemnly remember and think, never boast or brag,
About the many Americans who fought and died or returned wounded or whole, who now continue to serve,
And who feel our freedom is something others earned for us and ours to protect and for our children to preserve,
Though there are those who choose to demonstrate,
That they are able to do so speaks volumes for this country so great!
Itís this tradition that is what this day of remembrance is all about,
Not about war, which is something no hero or true American would ever venerate
But about something noble, simple and true, and clear for you and me to see
There at our Veteransí park, where you can walk and reflect and observe quietly,
The reason why those many memorials made out of the finest marble
Represent a history of freedom, one thatís really quite a marvel
And as you leave the park, if you take the brick path going east, thereís one thing you might do,
With sincere respect exhaust a little sigh, and whisper ďTHANK YOUĒ
Then take a big breath of fresh air and look up and then across to where our children picnic and play
And smile and hope that they wonít have to die for their freedom someday.