This memorial day was a quiet day at home with the kids. But it got me thinking about what memorial day was like when I was a kid…. a long, long, long, long…..time ago. I grew up in Minnesota, the land of 10,000 lakes, 5 bizillion mosiquitoes and picnics for any and every holiday we could think of. Memorial day was no exception.
We always went to either Minnehaha Falls or “Como Park Zoo for memorial day. And I looked forward to it every year. All of our family got together, the aunts, uncles, cousins, my grandparents, and it was a blast. But I think the most memorable part of memorial day for me was the cemetary.
I’m sort of a strange bird when it comes to cemetaries…I really like them. I mean I find them fascinating. I enjoy walking around them, looking at the grave markers, finding families that have died, trying to figure out what they died from, making up stories of their lives, ya know, creepy life time movie sort of stuff. So, when I was a kid, it was no surprise that I enjoyed going to the cemetary for the memorial to the soldiers on memorial day.
Grandma and pa took us there, every year. There was a short service, and then the guns, oh the guns, the blasted their 21 gun salute, through the air, ripping through the silent crowd reminding us all of the wars fought, the battles won and our freedom. From the time I was little it was a highlight. When we got a little older my brothers even got to be a part of the trumpeteers who played there during those ceremonies.
So, while mom was home cooking potato salad and fried chicken for the amazing picnic to come, we were celebrating and saluting the many fallen soldiers who had gone before us to lead our path to freedom. And while I didn’t know it then those moments on memorial day would shape my love of this country and my belief in God, freedom and America’s strength. And I still, even in this uncertain world we live in, believe we live in the greatest country of all!
Thank you to all the Vets out there and the Soldiers who fought so hard for us! ANd God Bless AMerica.