A different Memorial Day approaches
Memorial Day is only four days away. However, the usual Memorial Day celebrations will be limited and the Boy Scouts of America will not be placing small American flags at the nation’s cemeteries to commemorate the fallen soldiers of the various America wars and battles.
Once again, COVID-19 is claiming yet another American tradition.
Most folks have used Memorial Day as a get away day and the unofficial start of summer. Kids are typically rambunctious and want to take on summer by riding bikes, enjoying a day at the park or joining the family for a picnic. That’s the usual fanfare Americans are accustomed to on this holiday.
For those who’ve forgotten their history lessons on this holiday, a gentle reminder is in order. Originally, it was called Decoration Day, begun in the years after the Civil War. It became one of our federal holidays in 1971.
In the late 1860s, following the Civil War, which had claimed more American soldiers’ lives than any conflict in our history, the nation establish the first national cemetery. Many Americans decided to pay tribute to their fallen sons, fathers and brothers of that divisive war and began decorating the graves of those fallen men and reciting prayers.
According to some records, one of the earliest Memorial Days was said to have been organized by freed slaves in Charleston, South Carolina. However, in 1966 our federal government decided that Waterloo, New York was the official birthplace of Memorial Day.
Today, most Americans are celebrating the end of another war. It was a war against a virus that originated in China and swept across the world. It killed millions. It sickened many.
So, on this Memorial Day we celebrate the sacrifices of our brave American warriors who gave their lives as the ultimate sacrifice so the rest of us could live in a world of peace.
Our brave soldiers of this recent war against the coronavirus wear scrubs, masks and have been known to work horrendous shifts in an effort to defeat the virus that claimed nearly 90,000 Americans.
This is one of our nation’s most difficult years. We will defeat this enemy as our brave soldiers have defeated the enemies of freedom in the past.
To all of our veterans, and those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, we salute you and honor your efforts whether on the battlefield or in the halls of hospitals.