On Memorial Day we remember those men and women who died in active military service. The holiday was formerly known as Decoration Day and originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the Union and Confederate soldiers who died in the Civil War. By the 20th century, Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died while in the military service. Today, it serves as a day to remember any of our loved ones who have passed on.
Last Thursday, my extended family went out to dinner with my 88-year old mother. After dinner we walked together to the nearby cemetery, taking flowers to my father's and sister’s graves. The cemetery was neat and trimmed. Many had already placed flowers on the graves of their loved ones. We took a few minutes to reminisce, laugh together, and share stories.
Friday we made the annual trek to southern Utah for our family's 28th annual Memorial Day “Ranch Trip.” This tradition is filled with hiking, good food, lots of laughs, beautiful country, sunshine, dust, wind, sometimes rain, great conversation, and time to enjoy family. We always hold a Sunday morning graveside service at the small private cemetery where my Uncle Glendon and two of his children are buried on the remote ranch property.
What are your traditions? How do you celebrate Memorial Day? Do you have family members who have served their country? Any who lost their lives? Who do you remember?
We hope your summer is off to a good start. Be safe. Have fun. Think about what matters to you. And today, remember your loved ones and the contributions they have made to your life.