Remembering Those Who Made The Ultimate Sacrifice


Americans are more than ready for a little fun. As Memorial Day 2021 is upon us, we are all ready to do a little barbequing, maybe opening up the swimming pool, just being able to hang out and enjoy the company of family and friends, the ones we love.

And oh yeah, there is that minor detail of having an extra day to sleep in.

Memorial Day may have a little extra meaning for us this year. As the Budweiser commercial says, “2020 was a lemon of a year.” 

We are all definitely looking for a little down time for our holiday weekend. But it is so easy to forget the true meaning of why we have paused on Memorial Day.

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The Cost Of Freedom

We are able to enjoy our down time, our freedom, courtesy of the men and women of the United States military who made the ultimate sacrifice, so that the United States of America remains the land of freedom and opportunity.

And not just for those of us who were fortunate enough to be born in America, but for people from all over the world who desire a better life for themselves and their children, and who very often risk their very lives to get here because they know it is worth the struggle.

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The American Soldier

American citizens know that the American soldier is a unique breed. They go where they are ordered to go. They carry out the missions they are ordered to carry out.

They leave their own lives and families. The ones we remember on Memorial Day have left those lives and families for good.

But every hero we remember and honor on Memorial Day, from those who fought in the Revolutionary War to gain our independence as a nation, all the way up to Afghanistan and Iraq, they knew that not returning home to their families was a possibility.

They knew it was part of the job, but they went anyway.

They went anyway.

The freedom and liberty of the nation was that important.

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Being A Soldier, Not Just A Job

Ask anyone who has served in any branch of the United States military, and most will tell you it is not just a job, it is a calling, a sense of duty to one’s country. And in the case of the United States military, they are the most elite military the world has ever seen.

They are the best trained, the best equipped, and the best educated military in the world. There are so many who denigrate our soldiers and our military. Our Vietnam veterans had to endure being called “baby killers” and worse. 

The people who speak ill of the men and women who wear the uniform clearly have no understanding what being called a United States Soldier, Airman, Sailor, or Marine means. 

But Americans who love their country do know what it means.

And that is why we pause to remember their sacrifice, we pause to comfort their families, and we pause to remember not just the privilege, but the responsibility of what it means to be an American. 

While we flip those burgers, blow up the swim fins, and enjoy the company of loved ones, let’s also pause for just a moment, and thank those who made it possible.

And when Memorial Day is over, and we roll out of bed on Tuesday to go back to work, let’s remember then, too. And every day after.

 

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