Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

The OP Pack would like to dedicate today's post to the many veterans of war.


Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping" by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead" While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it's difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860's tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in Gen Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868. It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

Freedom is not free

I watched the flag pass by one day,
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Service man saluted it,
And then he stood at ease.

I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He'd stand out in any crowd.

I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil
How many mothers' tears?

How many pilots' planes shot down?
How many died at sea
How many foxholes were soldiers' graves?
No, freedom isn't free.

I heard the sound of Taps one night,
When everything was still,
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.

I wondered just how many times
That Taps had meant "Amen,"
When a flag had draped a coffin.
Of a brother or a friend.

I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.

I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.
No, freedom isn't free.

LCDR Kelly Strong, USCG - Copyright 1981


Memorial Day should remind us that freedom is always under challenge and that freedom is never free. Freedom is important enough to live for, and precious enough to die for. Let us not forget those men and women who have served our great nation during times of both peace and conflict.

Woos, the OP Pack

36 comments:

Moco said...

Thanks for the nice tribute to all who have served.

Martha Basset said...

We have just visited Khyra and remarked there how saddened we are that lives have been lost.
We thought your poem was very moving and sadly very true.
There are people left behind whose lifes remain forever incomplete because of loved ones who never returned.
love
Martha & Bailey xx

Pedro said...

We won't forget.

Pedro

Abby said...

Hi, You Guys...

What a beautiful tribute...

Abby xxxooo

Noah the Airedale said...

Great tribute pals.

Noah x

Rocky Creek Scotties and Java said...

Thank you for posting this fitting tribute to our veterans.

XOXO
Lilly, Piper, Carrleigh and Java

The Thundering Herd said...

Excellent tribute, thanks.

Ludo van Doggy said...

Thank you for this very important post.

Suzuki said...

Furry well said!
Big licks to you
Suzuki
xxx

Maggie and Mitch said...

What a beautiful tribute!
Happy Memorial day, guys!

Love ya lots,
Maggie and Mitch

Mack said...

We shall never forget the bravest of the brave!

That was a beewootiful poem !

Tank said...

Amen... it's tough to read this poem without choking up.

Stella said...

Thank you for your thoughts and also for that very tender, touching poem.

Kisses,
Stella

The FOUR Musketeers said...

Thats a very nice tribute you guys (:

Ozzie the OZmonster said...

Great poem, woos! I hope that you are enjoying your Memorial Day.

Ozzie

Sitka, Tia, & Cornelia Marie said...

What a great tribute! We will never forget what our troops do for us.
Hugs,
Sitka

Byron y Xinver said...

Nice post. In our country there's no tradition for this kind of celebrations.
Greetings.

Khyra The Siberian Husky And Sometimes Her Mom said...

Wow!

What a moving and pawesome post...

Tank woo as we tank them!

Hugz&Khysses,
Khyra

The Army of Four said...

That was beautiful, OP Pack! Thank you for honoring our fallen service members!!!
That poem is just incredible!
Tail wags,
Storms

Cyber-sibes said...

Awesome post! Furry interesting history, and a beawootiful poem! God bless the veterans and their families!

Woos & a-roos,
Star & Jack a-roo

Cyber-sibes said...

Awesome post! Furry interesting history, and a beawootiful poem! God bless the veterans and their families!

Woos & a-roos,
Star & Jack a-roo

Tee said...

Hello there Woo Pack,

What a great tribute.

We will not forget how many have sacrificed thier lives for freedom.

Licks and Wags

Tuffy and the Dog WOods Pack

pughy said...

That is a realy lovely tribute ..

Hugs GJ xx

Gus, Louie and Callie said...

That is an awesome tribute.. So many of those soldiers are my kids age. Toph has a friend that calls him from Iraq quite often.. We keep are paws crossed all those kids are safe..

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

Joe Stains said...

Great post guys, Happy Memorial Day!

Princess Eva and Brice said...

Very well woo'd

Princess Eva

Tracey and Huffle said...

That's a very nice tribute pups.

Huffle Mawson

Life With Dogs said...

Perfect post for this holiday, beautiful...

Lorenza said...

Thanks for sharing your beautiful tribute!
Kisses and hugs
Lorenza

Raising Addie said...

Well done!

Wonderful tribute!

Chasing my tale...
Addie, Lucie, and Hailey

Tweedles -- that's me... said...

Thank you for posting this beautiful tribute.
And thank you to all the brave ones who have served!
tweedles

Mochi and Mommy said...

That was a very beautiful tribute.

Mochi

Dughallmor Beagles said...

What a beautiful tribute for Memorial Day!
It's been ages sonce we visited and we're sorry :o( You PIF parcel went over a week ago (surface mail though....it was going to cost an arm and a leg to airmail....personally we think SHE could have made the sacrifice....she only uses one finger to type with anyway!)
Hope you guys are all well!
Slobbers xx

Steve, Kat, & Wilbur said...

Excellent tribute. We hope you had a good day.

Steve and Kat

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