Today is Memorial Day. A day set aside to honor those who have given their lives for this country. In countless wars and overseas conflicts. Brave men and women who gave their all.
They gave their lives to protect our freedoms. They went where our country sent them, and did what they needed to do.
Did they question their reasons for going? I’m sure many did. But they went. Some returned and some didn’t. Today we honor those that didn’t return.
But I cannot help but ask us all to add another couple of categories of our citizens to remember and pay our respects to on this Memorial Day. Citizens who left home one day as usual and never returned.
Let’s remember the hundreds of first responders, police and firefighters as well as EMT’s who have also given their lives to save others. Oh, I know right now the police are under attack again for not doing what they’re supposed to do. It’s become a o popular sport in this country, unfortunately. And there will always be those officers who are in the wrong, but the majority are good people, who’ve dedicated themselves to such service, and those of them who’ve given their lives in the line of duty should be honored as well. It’s a job I wouldn’t want to do, and I am thankful for each and every one of them that have chosen to do it.
And we need to continue to support those who gave so much, and even today are still trying to readjust to a world that isn’t the same as when they left to serve; a world that sometimes tends to forget them, or ignore them; a world that sometimes has trouble remembering all they went through, and how hard it is to re-adjust to a life that has certainly changed them, emotionally as well as sometimes physical.
And I want us to also remember another group of people…innocent people who’ve been senselessly murdered by cowardly people with guns, out to spread their hatred and violence for whatever twisted and deranged parts of their minds that were urging them forward.
Innocent children. Worshippers in their chosen houses of God. Innocent shoppers in malls and grocery stores. Innocent concert goers who were enjoying a night of music.
They unwillingly gave their lives because someone they didn’t even know decided they didn’t deserve to live.
And we continue on with our lives, thankful it wasn’t us.
But such violence touches all of us in some way. It forever changes a part of us, and sometimes we don’t even realize it.
The awfulness of so much violence in this country will eventually be forgotten by the majority of the country, but never by the families and communities which have been devastated by the tragedy. Just like the families of our servicemen and women who were lost in combat, they will NEVER forget. Not a day will go by without a memory sneaking into their mind, and those memories are all they have left. They can’t call to say hello. They can’t visit with them or invite them to dinner. They can only look at their pictures and relive their memories.
Today as most of us gather together with friends and family for picnics and parties, or go out to grab up the best Memorial Day sales, let’s take the time to remember those families who are grieving over their loved ones who will never attend such events again.
Remember the fallen, because they deserve never, ever to be forgotten. And remember the families who will also never forget.