Memorial Day is a US Federal holiday where most people have a day off, attend parades, watch baseball and sometimes barbecue. Some may go to the beach or travel, but in fact there’s a great deal of historical significance and substance attached to the day. It is considered the “unofficial” start of Summer…and vacationing. Schools are out (or soon will be), public pools and beaches open, and coincidentally, temperatures gets hotter.
Nonetheless celebrated annually in Spring, Memorial Day is a day set aside for remembering those who died while serving in the United States armed forces. It’s not to be confused with Veteran’s Day, another annual US Federal holiday in the Fall that honors everyone who served in the US military.
Memorial Day was first observed in 1868, when it was called Decoration Day, a day of rest to honor the 620,000 U.S. men and women who died in the Civil War. Millions more have served in the military since then; many making the ultimate sacrifice of their life for our freedoms. Roughly 1,264,000 American soldiers have died in the nation’s wars, but only as recently as the Vietnam War did the amount of American deaths in foreign wars eclipse the number who died in the Civil War.
To commemorate the holiday, we share a couple of pertinent quotes and wish you and yours a safe and peaceful weekend:
“What’s right about America is that although we have a mess of problems,
we have great capacity – intellect and resources – to do something about them.” –Henry Ford