Here is my most recent edition of Susan’s Corner from H.D. Living Magazine.  I thought that it was a good idea to share it with my KCAL peeps too.              

Memorial Day: A Day of Remembrance not just Revenue and Revelry

 What began as a day of solemn remembrance of those who “gave the last full measure of devotion,” has become another long weekend in which to revel, hold ‘blowout’ sales, and hit the beaches and BBQs for the unofficial start of summer.  While there is nothing wrong with enjoying the fun stuff over a long weekend or celebrating the American economic tradition by consuming goods and services, it is also important, particularly this year, to take a moment to remember what Memorial Day is all about. 

Memorial Day began just after the American Civil War, which began 150 years ago this year.  The Civil War claimed more than 600,000 American lives, and cemeteries quickly filled to overflowing.  Many national cemeteries (including Arlington and Gettysburg) were built during or just after the war.  Following the war, many soldiers’ bodies from both sides were reclaimed from rudely dug battlefield graves to be repatriated and reburied in proper cemeteries.  Mourners, North and South, began the practice of decorating the graves of their soldiers with flowers, ribbons and other embellishments as a way to honor the sacrifice of the dead.  Also called Decoration Day in some regions, for many years it was celebrated on different days in the North and South.  As the nation healed (and continues to heal) from the violent rift and Americans died on other battlefields in other wars, the last Monday in May became Memorial Day, a national holiday on which all soldiers were to be remembered. 

Families and friends spending time together on the cusp of summer, BBQing, and yes, even making major purchases, has been made possible by the brave sacrifices of those who have fallen in battle defending our rights to such pursuits, so be sure as you enjoy the pleasures of the day that you pause to remember why we celebrate.

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May 25, 2011 at 9:50 am | Uncategorized | No comment