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Honoring Memorial Day

Each year, thousands of Americans celebrate Memorial Day. Many attend sales, picnics or barbecues or travel in some form during that weekend. Memorial Day weekend starts the unofficial beginning of the summer season.

Memorial Day originally began as Decoration Day to honor the Civil War dead. Citizens would go out and picnic and leave flowers/decorations on the graves of the fallen. After the world wars, the United States decided to change the name to Memorial Day to honor all those who gave their lives in battle past and present. In 1971, the Uniform Monday Holiday Act officially made Memorial Day a holiday that took place on the last Monday of the month of May. Memorial Day is often confused with Veterans Day or is often thought of as an old war dead holiday. Many Gold Star families know this is not the case.

In our post 9/11 world, so many United States military personnel and veterans sacrifice so much each day. Our “freedom is not free,” because these brave men and women sacrifice so much, many with their own lives in multiple ways.

I propose that, by changing the verbiage of “Happy Memorial Day” to “Honoring Memorial Day,” we will continue to honor all veterans, military and even Americans from past to present, and even future, who have sacrificed for the freedoms we so very much enjoy. By educating the public of this change, we can in turn continue to honor Memorial Day for generations to come.

Jennifer Henderson

Winston-Salem

Why we celebrate

For those who intend to take a few minutes this weekend to reflect on why we celebrate Memorial Day, let me suggest a video posted on YouTube that you might include in your reflection.

To access “Mansions of the Lord,” posted by John Langskov, go online to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lq2BbVZ2LEc&t=63s. And keep a few tissues nearby.

Semper Fi and God bless America.

Ray Joyner

Winston-Salem

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