By L.H. HARDING
For this one day each year, Memorial Day, our country pauses to remember the Americans who gave their lives for our country. But, in a sense, for the families that have lost loved ones, every day is Memorial Day. They remember with pride and sadness those family members who paid the price for our freedom in lost dreams and lost lives. On Memorial Day, we should all pause to remember those who gave all of their tomorrows to ensure that ours would be free. The annals of our history are filled with their sacrifice, their heroism, their idealism, and their loss.
At this year’s service in Cherokee on Monday, May 25 at 11am, the Yellowhill Veterans Memorial Cemetery will be decorated to honor our fallen. A bell of remembrance will toll to honor each service member who did not return. Freedom comes at a price, and that price is very high.
For those of us that remain, it is our duty to ensure that those men and women, past and present, are honored for their service and that future generations are inspired by their heroic actions in support of our great country. There is nothing more powerful, nor reverant, than walking in a Veteran’s Memorial Park and reflecting on the courage and sacrifice of our fallen warriors. We do indeed owe them a debt that we can never repay. We grieve for the sadness, the feeling of pain and loss in their families, and we remember. May we never take for granted the blessings of freedom. And, may we never again sacrifice one warrior, not one, in some politician’s trumped-up cause so that the painful memories of Memorial Day will be healed and our hearts can again be lifted up in love and peace and joy and forgiveness.
On this day and every day, as we remember the names of our fallen, and honor their memories, let us renew our commitment to them and to each other. God bless our country and God bless those who gave so much to pass the torch of freedom.
On Memorial Day, at 3pm local time, please join your fellow Americans in observing 60 seconds of silence. This National Moment of Remembrance honors U.S. service members the world over, who gave their lives in the line of duty.
Harding is the Commander of the Steve Youngdeer American Legion Post 143.