Why Memorial Day Isn’t For You

U.S. Army honor guard soldiers fold a flag.

For those of you in uniform, there’s an easy test to determine if “Memorial Day” is for you: are you currently reading this article? If you answered “yes,” then you and your family may wish to hold the (much deserved) self-congratulations until Veterans Day.

The United States of America. Land of the free, home of the brave. The greatest country in the world. A nation built and maintained by heroes. Our Armed Forces are comprised of the most selfless men and women in the world.

How heroic is someone willing to leave their family, risk their life and dedicate every part of their being to defend our nation?! I certainly couldn’t do it. I can’t defend myself against a spider, let alone a terrorist. It’s outside my comprehension to grasp the idea that we have so many people who willingly place themselves in harm’s way and do violence on our behalves so that we can sleep peacefully at night. I’m allowed that luxury because of them. Our men and women in uniform exemplify bravery. There is no doubt about that.

U.S. Army honor guard soldiers fold a flag.

But there are people who don’t get it.

We see it every year. Someone makes a heartfelt post on Memorial Day about their own service or the service of someone in their family. We understand — you’re proud; we are too! We all beam with pride. And who in our shoes wouldn’t? We should all be thankful every single day, especially Veterans Day, for the sacrifices and hard work of Service members near and far.

Wait. Re-read that last sentence. Veterans Day. In November.

That is the day set aside to recognize those who have served or are serving in the military.

Memorial Day, however, is very different. Memorial Day is the day to remember and pay tribute to those who gave the ultimate sacrifice: their lives. While you’re rightfully proud of your service member for his or her service, remember that there are those who have buried a husband or wife. There are children growing up without a father or mother. There are heroes who won’t get to see their baby take her first steps or their son walk across the stage at high school graduation. They’ll never experience growing old and they will never meet their grandchildren. They will never get another breath of air or kiss their loved ones goodnight again.

They are dead.

They exist only in our fondest, most cherished memories. Thus the name of the holiday (if you can call it a “holiday”) — Memorial Day.

Memorial Day is about them and their families. That’s it.

Social media has become a platform for thoughtless ranting, mass celebration and the overall ability to broadcast information without a vetting process. It’s easy to turn holidays into what they’re not. While we may not agree about the significance of Christmas or the history of Hanukkah, it is essential that we pay our respects to the fallen by not losing focus on what Memorial Day is about.

I urge you to use this opportunity to memorialize the lives of those who took their last breaths in our defense.

All gave some. But on Memorial Day we recognize those who gave all.

 

Traci Moran is an Army spouse of five years who loves to address the elephant in the room. She says she has a passion for making the uncomfortable truth lighthearted and spelled out in a silly, honest way. 

 

Photo courtesy U.S. Army.

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  • Allan

    Traci: Loved your article, but I may disagree a little with you in part. Veteran’s Day is only for those who have served on active duty and have been discharged. Armed Forces Day is for those who are presently on active duty. We always appreciate our military. Bless them all.

    • Tamara

      You would be amazed at the amount of people who don’t know that Veteran’s Day and Armed Forces Day even exist. Also they are not just for those who are currently on or have served on active duty. They are for those who also serve or have served in the Reserve and National Guard.

    • H. Gallo

      Veterans Day is an official United States holiday that honors people who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces, also known as veterans. It is a federal holiday that is observed on November 11. It coincides with other holidays such as Armistice Day and Remembrance Day, which are celebrated in other parts of the world and also mark the anniversary of the end of World War I (major hostilities of World War I were formally ended at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918, when the Armistice with Germany went into effect). The United States also originally observed Armistice Day; it then evolved into the current Veterans Day holiday in 1954.

      Veterans Day is not to be confused with Memorial Day; Veterans Day celebrates the service of all U.S. military veterans, while Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving

    • Is that written somewhere? I thought a veteran was anybody who served 2 years or more. That doesn’t mean they have to be discharged…

      • J. Wendell

        A veteran is anyone that has served 1 day or more on active duty. They can still be serving and be a veteran. Now where it gets fuzzy is when you start talking about veterans benefits…. all kinds of different guidelines, but veteran is still anyone that has served at least 1 day on active duty.

      • Barb

        Veterans don’t have to have served to the 20 year retirement. They just have to have served. But ALL receive discharge papers. They are all “discharged” in one way or another. “Honorable, “dishonorable”, “other than honorable”.

    • meggerz

      Actually a veteran is a person who serves more than 181 days on active duty, after going through basic training, and advanced training.

    • Alix M

      Allan if armed forces day is widely known, it should be a nationally recognized holiday. But it isn’t and it isn’t widely known either. Veterans Day is absolutely for everyone who is serving or who has served in the military, including reservists. You are the only person who I have ever heard say that. That’s being naive for sure.

    • Maria Martens

      Thank you for posting this article. I did not get an opportunity to read all the replies but for those that I did it is appreciated. So many people in our Country are uneducated on Memorial Day, Veterans Day and Armed Forces Day it’s somewhat sad. As a Gold Star Parent all of these days changed for us. First when our sons joined the service and then on the day we got the knock at our door. As for these significant days most folks including a lot of military personnel don’t know that the last Sunday of September is the day that is observed in the United States as “Gold Star Mothers Day”. This year 2015 it will be on September 27. So as Memorial Day approaches a family is missing/grieving the loss of a loved one and brothers and sisters in arms are missing/grieving the loss of a comrade/friend. Everyday is someone’s Memorial Day. Hugs and blessings go out to all who have served.

    • Rooster

      I concur with your assessment sir. Thank you for commenting.

  • Brad

    Great article, as a recently retired USAF member I have long supported http://www.taps.org/ as they help those families that have lost that loved one in the service of the military.

  • Kathleen Cochran

    You are so right. Most people are well-intended. (Like when they say someone won a Purple Heart or a Bronze Star. You don’t “win” those. You are awarded those.) Memorial Day is for those who gave all – period.

  • William L Gerhardt

    I’m truly greatful for your reminder, I attended three Fallen Soldier Ceremonies in Iraq nothing can touch your heart more deeply, I attend the local service and do so to remind others that it is not about the beginning of summer, three day weekend, hot dogs, hamburgers, and festivities. They should remove the three day and put it on a Saturday so that it’s not viewed in such a disgraceful manner.
    We need to bring back the respect and honor our Fallen Deserve

  • Cat

    I don’t understand what the problem is for Kevin with Tracy’ article. She seems to be reminding people that Memorial Day is for remembering those who were left downrange, not those who returned. I am also lost as to what Bobby’s issue is with Eddie, what did he say that was so disrespectful that you would suggest that he die for it. Don’t get it twisted I’m not tying to start something, just confused as to what Tracy said that set you off. At any rate, all I wanted to add was that Memorial Day is also, or at least started out as a remembrance of Civil War soldiers who were killed in battle. Eventually all Americans who died in battle regardless of the conflict, were included. I think some people get confused about who is being honored, it is not ALL soldiers from all nations, but only Americans.

  • I went into this thinking I would like it. Thinking I would appreciate your cander. Instead, as a Veteran. As someone who has had the humbling honor of presenting the flag to the families of the fallen – I find myself belittled and insulted.

    “Self-Congratulations”? I have never nor would I pat myself on the back for serving – and those of us who wore the uniform know more than most what Memorial Day is for. Those are our brothers and sisters in the ground. Some of the men and women you addressed are the very people who held that fallen hero when they took their last breath. How dare you assume we think Memorial Day is about us? We are the ones who remember the Gold Star Families. The ones who send birthday cards to our fallen brothers children. Who check in on his widow and mom. We are the ones who walk under the heavy weight of guild for not being about to do more.

    Your general message reminding people that Memorial Day is about the Fallen is good – but your target? Military Veterans and Service Members? Extremely off. In horrendously bad taste and is just generally out of line.

    Might want to check the Army Values – your spouse has to live up to “Selfless Service” is a big deal to us; we don’t walk around patting ourselves on the back.

    • *candor

      doggone phone.

      • Pattie

        I don’t think it was targeted at the military knowing what memorial day was. I just recently had this disagreement w a civilian who lumped all the holidays into one. Last year I attended a memorial day function 200 plus people and the leader of this recognized all branches and each active duty and retired member.as a military widow I was hurt that no mention of the fAllen wS addressed. Anyone who has served and is serving deserves a thank you every day but one day is set for remembering those who gave it all.

    • GMan

      100% spot on. As a veteran who served 28 years, I don’t need to be “educated” on memorial day by a military spouse. As jb_rugby said, good message but you missed the mark on the audience and quite honestly, I don’t think you could have sounded more condescending to those who wear or have worn the uniform.

      • 34yearssofar

        Couldn’t agree more. Most who have served know this, and the soldier’s spouse sounded pretty darn condescending. She should keep her blog to herself.

    • Nessa

      Thank You

      • kurt

        The whole article came off as condescending. The first few lines automatically seem to assume that I think this holiday is for those of us alive in uniform. I know what it is and thank you very much, say a prayer over my meals everyday, and especially memorial day for our fallen troops.

  • Sonya

    Thank You for this article. I have been trying to explain the difference in Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day for 5 years. Our oldest son was KIA Sept 12, 2009. Memorial day is for Bryan, Our youngest so Jeremy went in the AF 5 months after losing his only sibling. Veteran’s Day is for Jeremy. I know we are just one family but we all try to spread the word on the difference of days. Memorial day I cry a lot more than Veteran’s day but as with most days there are tears. One day a year for the Fallen is not to much to ask.
    Thank you again for you article

    • Army Wife

      Sorry for your loss. Your son is our son and will be remembered. Thank you for your sacrifice.

    • Pauline

      So sorry for the loss of your son and God Bless your son who joined the Military after his brother lost his life. You are a true Military family. My husband and brother both were in the Military during the Viet Nam war, they both came back to us with disabilities and my husband eventually died due to his. I pray that someday there will be no more wars.

  • Michelle

    Freedom of speech is truly a beautiful thing. It separates us from the others. Unfortunately, ones words can be clouded with anger & the message is… Well, read some of the above. Sonya, your post is the only one I give any insight or thought to. As a mother and a Veteran I thank you for your strength and courage. I know of the fallen and this Memorial Day I will pay homage to your son Bryan as well. Then, in November I will I will celebrate with Jeremy and all of those who have served.

  • guest

    If you are a service member and respect the difference between Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day, then this article is not referring to you, and I don’t understand why you are attacking the writer for asking people to honor these days appropriately. I happen to know the kind of people she is referring to, and I am very glad to see this article. I have been saying this for years, mainly because our schools don’t seem to know the difference either. I also see the same servicemen who, every year on Memorial Day write “thank me for what I did for you” messages on Facebook. They should know better, and their actions take away from the meaning of this day and appear selfish.
    I also would like to add that people who say “Happy Memorial Day” need to rethink their greeting. This is not a “holiday” during which we should be happy. It is a time of reflection, sorrow, and gratefulness for those who gave their lives so that we can live with the freedoms we have left.

  • Steve

    I am a Navy vet., I lost 2 of my best friends while serving and I think of them often. My son was Army, he died while in service to this country, although I miss my Navy brothers, it in no way compares to losing my son, I applaud Tracy for this article, way too many people have forgotten the true meaning of Memorial Day, and this I believe is to whom she speaks and not to those who know the meaning with every breath, I don’t understand the need to attack a person who’s only trying to enlighten those that don’t remember.
    And Gunner…. I lost my son, he is dead, I don’t want you to know how I or my family feels, I don’t want anyone to know, because there is no explaining it only experiencing, and with all due respect, it is an experience that you never return from, Thank You for your service.

    • Tanya

      I’m sorry to hear of your losses and thank you for your many sacrifices. I can’t imagine. I carelessly wished a combat veteran a “happy” Memorial Day last week. I recognize now how insensitive it was. Do most veterans recognize that lots of us are just ignorant to this stuff and maybe appreciate the sentiment behind it (if that is even an accurate description…I did thank him for his service, so I treated it more like Veterans Day) and not terribly offended? I feel awful but he is not a person I see regularly to apologize for it.

  • Guest

    You are doing your brothers and sisters in arms a significant disservice by continuing to use profanity toward a woman who is only attempting to highlight the importance of accurately honoring the sacrifice represented by Memorial Day. Your behavior is reprehensible and goes a long way toward showing how much honor and respect you *didn’t* learn in your alleged time in the military.

  • Charles Morris

    I have more than once tried to explain the difference between the various days. I also feel that on Memorial Day weekend, our churches should have stand those who have lost a loved one in the service of our country. If people stand up, say a prayer for them, and reach out to them in love. If no one stands, pray a prayer of thanksgiving for the congregation having been spared that grief, then pray for those who are hurting in that grief…

  • Lgreen

    I think I would re-title that to not a You statement. You generally infers the reader is the targeted individual. I’m pretty certain the flag I fly is for my father on Memorial Day. I’d attach a picture of their graves if I could because I have no pictures of him in uniform. Maybe a picture of the flag box would be sufficient proof Memorial Day is for me?

  • D.Valentin

    Much appreciated to remind those who do not know. I myself remind those at the PX of making purchases let alone neing open before noon.
    And for over 10-years now, I do not eat Hamburgers and Hot Dogs, known as a celebrating summertime food. Letting everyone who asks know the reference to Memorial Day and what it means to me. Hooah!

  • Mikhail

    I stopped reading after you wrote “defend myself against …terrorist”. Out of curiosity, the choice for such stereotypical term was caused by lack of knowledge or pure laziness?

  • bobby

    ok so only thing I noticed is that she said the ones that died gave all and ones that survived gave some but yet they came back with mental problems and injuries that they got to live with for the rest of their lives to me they gave all too

    • CArolyn

      The ones who died, DID give all…they gave their lives! Their families gave their lives. The men and women who came back and are suffering from PTSD or depression or anything at all that is not their norm….they gave a lot also, just not ALL.

      • lbravo

        If you have lived with a stranger who returned from combat, you know what bobby is talking about. The person who left died. The one who came back is often so severely damaged that at times you wonder if that person lost their soul. They are walking dead. Sure, some get rehabilitated; but for others, mental and physical injuries are so severe that family knows they have simply lost a member and only his/her skin and bones are walking on the planet. Sorry. I grieve for the military dead who passed in combat, AND those in the ground who lived lives of complete misery because they fought to protect our way of life. Semper Fi!

  • j morgan

    i`m retired usaf veteran who served 20years -ihave allways felt Memorial day is for an will be for the one`s who did come back home period.. we need to support our veterans ,that are coming home as well wish them well.

    • carolyn

      That is saved for Veteran’s Day. Memorial Day is for the military who paid the ultimate sacrifice.

    • Guest

      Oh hello, so you want to be greedy and get credit on Memorial Day & Veteran’s day. Shame on you, I think you are one of the self =serving ones she was talking about. I lost my son in Afghanistan. So Memorial is about his sacrifice , not Veteran’s who are are still alive! You have your day, then and we appreciate your service.

  • D.Valentin

    Gunner or anyone else in his 2XL K-pot,
    Memorial= Remembering the the service Veteran dead. Not service members like you.
    You and I and everyone else still here breathing, can happily celebrate Veterans Day. If you wo t understand, turn the page to July4th.

    • Gunner Calley

      I know what Memorial Day is D.
      Did you not read my comment?
      Barking up wrong tree there.
      My point is I do not need a dependant trying to explain it to me, Nor you.

      • MasterBlaster

        You finally got it and thats good. Remember this blog site and its primary audience. Let the dependents talk it out. They are the silent soldiers who are left behind during deployments, with many worried and some remembering that dreaded day.
        Its actually your tree that started the negative responses. She really was not condesending woman; not right for you a senior NCO to tell a woman dependent to shut-up and she had a better/sensible description of Memorial Day than you!
        So you should Stand Down and read it all again in a couple of days with fresh eyes.

        D. Valentin, Sergeant Major 1978-present with multiple deployments as Platoon Sergeant in-theatre and personal experience with those who didnt make it back.

  • Guest~Dragonfly

    I appreciated the Faith, Love Patience and Courage it took the author to address this topic. These days have been confused and most individuals do not understand nor practice them like they should. So thank you for readdressing it to our communities and children. I also completely agree and ave seen that some on Social Media, I did not say ALL I said SOME and hopefully very few service members, whom are a tad narcissistic in their behavior & language in service to their country.

    I am not new to being a part of a military family at the age of 42yrs, however I am VERY new this time, not as a daughter, granddaughter, niece, many generations, but as a future spouse this time. However I am not new to the meaning of these days of service nor the respect and gratitude for ALL whom sacrifice… that includes the ones left behind.

    As I lay here day and night terminally ill crying every hour around the clock not for my own pain and soul, but for my boyfriend; not knowing if he is died or alive during “Black-Out or Sterile Area” modes for his ops that at times last weeks gives me such anxiety there is not enough Xanax for this, Literally. I do not know how some of you women have done this for so long. For the love of my life, He has served his country over 20yrs+ and continues to do so with INTEGRITY!

    This is my very first open forum comment, so please forgive me if you feel I am out of line and have communicated in an inappropriate manner.

    However, I have an issue with anyone, especially Mr. Kevin D. “Gunner” Calley SFC (Retired Reserve), even though we are allowed “Free Speech” and our options to be displayed in such an open forum for all to converse and communicate with one another with kindness. But, to put such a “label” on any spouse or over one whom is just trying to bring awareness is COMPLETELY OUT OF LINE and you mister are the one that is being DISRESPECTFUL towards your own military family and these days of remembrance. For she’s one of our Family Members In The Military including yours and you should show some respect towards that.
    > Not Call Her A Slang-Word I Actually Had To Google To See What It Meant. You Might As Well Just Called Your Own Mother The “F-Word”.

    I am very, well I have no words for you Kevin D. “Gunner” Calley SFC (Retired Reserve) that are appropriate nor would I lower myself to your defamatory comments to call you any of them not even in private. Your comment or the use of ‘REMF’ {www.internetslang.com/REMF-meaning} referring to or about the author that you would disgrace anyone let alone a wife, mother or just a women period when we carry our hearts emotions more openly than some others. This label of yours had nothing to do with what the author was trying to communicate and bring the true meanings about. Also in this manner of yours it is not respectful for even the uniform you once wore; you just DISGRACED the uniform you once put on.

    ~ Heartbroken & Worried

  • CArolyn

    How does this belittle or offend you Gunner? You are a combat veteran, I thank you for your service. And I will thank you on Veteran’s Day. I will save Memorial Day to honor and remember the fallen.

    • Gunner Calley

      By insinuating that we do not know the difference, that is how.
      I have never said it was about me.
      Memorial Day is to remember the ones we lost.
      Not sure why everyone is thinking I’m saying anything else.

      • ben

        Gunner is being straight forward….which for the bleeding hearts is a fatal wound obviously. He is correct. Memorial day is for those who gave all. A 24 hr grieving period for all of america. There isnt anything wrong with a picnic or a drink or fireworks on this day. If i were killed in action it is what i would want for everyone. Everyone is entiltled to their opinion….its what we fought for….i personally take the day to honor family members and friends and brothers who were killed in action or died later even from mental or emotional trauma…..what i am trying to say is….dont dig too deep. Just honor the dead on this day.

  • Guest

    Oops…cut off.

    Gunner, I’m sorry that you were wronged or let down in you your time(s) of need. Sounds like good old sour grapes to me. All you’re doing by blasting spouses and talking down to us like each are that horror story is becoming a nightmare and cautionary tale yourself. Don’t you ever for a single second believe that you are better than a true, loyal military spouse. Shame on you and thank heavens your crappy opinion doesn’t actually change a darn thing. :)

    • Gunner Calley

      I am “blasting ” no one, ya’ll are the ones blasting me. Never said I was better than anyone, but that is a two way street.
      I know the toughest job in the military, and that is being a military spouse.
      But I don’t need a lecture from any of you on Memorial Day.It is just damned disingenuous to think you need to tell a Veteran the difference.As for what you or anyone else thinks about me or my comments, I really do not care, opinions vary.

      • guest

        Psssst….you realize this page is for spouses, many of which have never been active duty, not AD/vets right? Common sense, if you had any, would indicate this article wasn’t directed towards you.

  • Guest

    Right on!

  • Mary Cedano

    I came across this article through an email from Military.com. I’m not a part of any “spouse feed” or whatever you want to call it. I thought I could learn something new by reading this article even though it’s titled “Memorial Day might not be for you”… (Not exact words, I know!) Memorial Day SHOULD be for everyone, for everyone to remember a lost service member, whether related to anyone or not. Our children today should “participate”, appreciate and learn the true meaning of these special days and remember that someone has died for our/their freedom. Maybe this article should be posted on more specific social media forums where there are those who “selfishly pat themselves on the back” and should not have been linked through military.com site where veterans will read it and take offense, then post a response that some won’t like. I would be offended too. After all the sacrifices they gave, for all of you (myself included) to have this freedom of speech, show them a little respect. (Not attacking the writer here)
    My father served 20 years in the air force until the age of approx 38, and he served in Vietnam. He may have contracted cancer because of his service. HE DIED AT 53! I not only remember him everyday, but I honor him (as well as the others that are not with us) on Memorial’s Day and Veteran’s Day!! And until an actual veteran, a military service member or the family who has lost someone during service tells me that what I’m doing is disrespectful, I will continue to do this. FYI, during the Veteran’s Day parade, the ones who were lost are honored on that day as well! By our veterans, by their families, etc… Should we tell them they are not doing things right? If anything, it wasn’t enough! We need more people participating and honoring our service men and women, all the time. Good article, wrong audience.

    • Gunner Calley

      Thank you so much Mary.
      This is what I was trying to say. I will admit my social skills leave a lot to be desired.
      I guess I need to work on them more.
      8 )
      * See folks, other people think the same thing I did.
      Just more polite and professionally than I did.

  • Saddened

    It seems to me it is like grieving. Everyone grieves differently. I have so many people in my life that I have lost including my husband in Iraq. I spend the whole three days going to different cemeteries just to put flowers on their graves. It is actually kinda crazy to fight about what this so-called holiday is supposed to be about. REALLY.

  • Military wife

    Yeah, I have to agree with a lot of the postings here: The article is good for the “education” of remembering the difference between the days, but the title, tone, and audience are probably not the right fit and will make some people feel a sting in reading how it’s written. Memorial Day is not “for you” should likely read to say it’s “for all those who gave their all” or something less negative and more inclusive. There are so many people who like to take our patriotic holidays/remembrance days and fly the flag and go to the cemeteries or spend some time remembering those who do serve, did serve, died, were injured, or all of the above while serving our country. I even remember our allies, too, on most of the patriotic days, if I’m at a particular memorial or location where I know our victory for the USA depended on the sacrifices others made for a nation they never knew. It’s probably important to word things in a way that doesn’t make this hallowed holiday/memorial day such a joking sounding educational essay, which I know the author was not trying to do. I think it’s good to remember we have lots of national holidays to remember different things about our country’s heroes, military, etc., and there is a blurriness that comes with the celebrations of those days, which might be a good thing to educate folks about on some level. But, it probably shouldn’t be presented with the exact title given, in order not to make those who know the difference, who want to remember the living and dead no matter what the occasion, and really we should make it all about those people who are alive but who did so much for our nation! For my part, this week in Washington, DC, you can go online and see which flights are coming in to the DCA airport to greet our veterans who are coming in all summer and early fall to visit the memorials for their particular service to our nation! I’ll be there on Wednesday, May 20th to greet a 9 a.m. flight! And, I don’t think anyone cares that a lot of special events are held in this area of the country for our living vets! We don’t do enough for them, anyway…but I am sure that’s not what the author meant to convey in her essay.

  • Edward

    When the rich wage war, it is the poor who die.

    • kh

      Inappropriate for this subject.

  • Bittersweet

    I just received word from the va, my husbands death 3yrs after tdrl was service connected. I had already known since I really lost him when he was placed on tdrl. This article hit home. It actually ruined my day. It’s been a yr since his physical death and last week the va decision set it in stone had he chosen a different path my 12, 11 and 6 yr old would have a loving father. I sat at work with the truth in this article hurting. My husband missed our son’s first yr of band, and our son’s kinder graduation next week. while I was in pain the people around me discussed their Memorial Day plans. Never to include a way to honor people like my husband. In my deep thought, I realized my kids often make crafts and celebrate things like Valentine’s Day but my children never get to feel the pride they should feel for having a father like they did. No one ever recognizes their sacrifice or thank them for the sacrifice their father made. My children and I, go alone in our grief. When I’m asked about my husband I tell people I’m a surviving spouse and they seem to not understand. When I have mention TAPS no one knows who is part of that organization or what it is there for. To include even some soldiers themselves, don’t know. Im sad to see the fighting over this article. While I understand some of us know what Memorial Day is for not all know exactly or even take a moment to realize.

    • JJ in the DC area

      Hey Bittersweet! We do care, so many of us. You probably have had so much pain and the frustration of your husband’s death and also raising your children, and you haven’t been able to take time for yourself and to find those many groups who understand. It is hard to see people celebrate a holiday that is really a sad day of remembrance, but of course, life goes on for those who are not affected directly by any tragedy. We realized it with 9-11, when my husband’s work that day at the Pentagon changed things in our world forever. People just move on, forget. But, there are support groups and many veteran and survivor organizations who want to hear from you. I know they are there for you and would be a great source of inspiration and caring, and I know many who post here will and should help you connect! We salute his sacrifice and service, we mourn his death, and we pray for you and ask for others to wrap you up in love, strength and support. We salute you and the job you will be doing to live on and remember him, too, with love and honor. Sending our salute for your sacrifices each day!

  • domenick ciano

    mothers protect their children, fathers protect their family, Veterans protect their country,
    The VA is supposed to protect their VETERANS when they return from war, wounded and mentally broken. So why isn’t the VA stepping up and taken care of us, process OUR CLAIMS and Appeals

  • Kathi

    I just recently heard on the radio that we need to thank our veteran’s for their service this weekend. While I don’t disagree with the sentiment, as a Gold Star Mother, I take issue with it. Memorial Day is about honoring those who served an lost their lives. We have a day to remember out living and yes, even our wounded veterans which I do not begrudge. Don’t begrudge me the time to honor my son and his sacrifice on Memorial Day. I wish he was till alive to be honored on Veteran’s Day. Either day is not a holiday for me.

  • Cat

    It has been educational reading all these comments. Those who took offense, those who took offense at those who were offended, those who still misunderstand what Memorial Day is and isn’t, and some gut wrenching family member stories of their loses. I am sorry for those who misinterpreted the authors intent, and felt like she was telling service members who left brothers on the field, what Memorial Day is all about. I do agree that the title was a bit misleading and off-putting, but I understood the content and was able to separate the title’s misleading tone from the intent of the article. Too many people do not understand that Memorial Day Is to honor AMERICAN’s who died in war, conflict, battle, action, etc. It began as a day to honor Civil War soldiers who died. After WW I those soldier who died were also honored as have all soldiers since then. Not veterans and not current service members, there are specific days set aside for those groups. Now I am of the belief that every day we should be thankful for ALL military service men and women, no matter which group they belong to. The military defends this country not only physically, but they defend our way of life, which includes Freedom of Speech, which is what makes it possible for us to comment on this comment board. Freedom of Speech does not however extend to include some of the nasty comments, which have been deleted. If respect is wanted then respect must be given. I am truly sorry for and grieve for the families of those who made the ultimate sacrifice. I respect and honor those who have served and are serving and the families. Without the service men and women and the support of their families our military would not be the most powerful in the world. Shall we stop the petty arguing about how we are offended and get back to honoring those who gave their lives so that we can live in the best country in the world and have the most freedoms and choices of any nation ever.

  • Kelley

    this is a holiday…holiday means “holy” day so this day IS a holiday!

  • F. Young

    How about you spend your time writing a meaningful article that honors our fallen instead of chastising those that honor our veterans on the “wrong” day. There is no wrong day to honor any of the men and women that serve/have served our country alive or dead.

    • Gunner Calley

      Amen.

    • Cat

      So you can’t give just ONE day that the sole purpose is to honor those who made the ultimate sacrifice? ONE day, that is all this is about. Honor everyone every other day of the year, just leave this ONE day, ONE day for the exclusive honoring of the fallen. Why is that too much to ask? It sounds to me more like you just don’t like what and how she wrote the article, but the more you argue about it the less respect you are giving the fallen. ONE day, just ONE day.

  • Peyman

    Liked your post.As an Iranian who is willing to immigrate to the U.S ,I really respect and celebrate the memorial day within my heart.

  • Nicole

    Now they are to spool the military they don have values any more??

  • Tierra

    As a Marine Corps Combat Vet I agree 110%! This is a day for the fallen, not for living vets!

  • Valerie Lawrence

    As a fortunate military retiree, I live on an Air Force (training) Base. I enjoy all of the Giant Voice notifications, even the warning that there is lightning within 5 nautical miles (there’s pilot training here)! Each night at 2200, “Taps” is broadcast, and I am always given to pause. Yes, it’s lights out for the myriad trainees. I am drawn back to the awe-inspiring military funeral of my Father. He died at 85, his war having ended in 1945. Most importantly, I think of those for whom the song compels my throat to catch…those whose sacrifice was possibly favorable or detested by the American public. To those of us who truly care, public approval or dissent has never constrained our grateful hearts. I am profoundly grateful to that Marine, Sailer, Soldier, and Airman.

  • Joe

    Here we go with preaching again. We all know what memorial day is for. You don’t have to force us all into despair. Let us drink in celebration, not sorrow.