As I sit here this weekend with 30+ family enjoying a reunion and listen to the laughs, stories, and food cooking I sit here both happy and sad.
I sit here happy for all of them to be able to enjoy the freedoms of this country and the ability for all of us to get together. Some of them have served and they know what it means, others never have and only know the stories from some of us who have. Good for both of the distinct groups. Thank God we have so many that have answered the call of this Country to preserve this way of life. Also thank God those that are here can enjoy a life without knowing the horrors others have seen.
I also sit here sad thinking about those reunions and gatherings that are missing a key person in the last few years. That father, mother, son, daughter, cousin, husband, wife, brother, sister, cousin or friend that cannot be with loved ones. The one that is the reason why we have this weekend. Why we honor Memorial Day.
I think about Danny missing his brother, or Cheryl or Donna missing their sons, or Robert missing his, or Rachel missing her husband or Illiana missing her brother. Those are just a few of the names of family of the fallen that I either know personally and/or have written about on this blog.
These are just a few of the reasons why we have this day and for as much as I am sure those who have fallen would look down on us all now and say enjoy the day and have a great time with each other, the rest who are still walking this earth miss them.
I know that had I been called to give my life, that would have been my last wish “don’t cry for me, I am in a much better place, enjoy each other and make the most of your time together”.
So it is in this dilemma I sit, where I know we all celebrate and should, but for many we also mourn as many of us always will. I hope all who read this truly take the time to think, ponder and remember why we have this holiday and why it is a very special one that stands apart from all of our other holidays. If you personally knew someone who has given their life for our country in the Global War on Terror, you can find their picture and any news stories about them at http://projects.militarytimes.com/valor/. Or you can just go see and learn about some of those who have made the ultimate sacrifice on your behalf.
I ask you to also consider and think about the statement below. Maybe even use it to teach the children in your life about these days and put them into perspective.
Without Veterans’ Day there would be no Memorial Day and without Memorial Day there would be no Independence Day.