Memorial Day: Memories and a heartfelt Thank You to all Servicemen and women

I will never forget the comment an Israeli made to me about our Memorial Day. “In Israel, on the day we honor our dead, at a certain time, everything and everyone comes to a stop. All traffic just stops and people bow their head in memory of their dead. Here you have three day sales.” Gulp.

As with everything in the United States, it depends what lens you view thru. He was right. If you knew nothing about us, you would assume it was a commercial enterprise, this day for remembering our servicemen and women, specifically those who died in service to our country. But, and it is a big but, choose another lens and this is what you will find throughout smalls towns, cities and states across our vast country:

The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at Arlington National Cemetary:

Cemeteries across the country filled with our servicemen and women:

Parades in memory and to honor our dead:

We set aside two national days to remember our veterans: Memorial Day and Veterans Day, separated by about six months, one at the end of May and one on November 11th.

Today and throughout this weekend, I need no urging to remember my family members who served and the men and women I consider extended family by virtue of their service. Last year, at this time, I wrote a post honoring my father, my brothers and my cousin and my uncles and I think it a good one. Perhaps you will, too.

While I believe in this Day and honor it with my heart and hands, I also believe to the last cell of my body that our veterans and serving men and women deserve our best and I am very angry about the reports surfacing on their medical care via the Veterans Administration. It is not that their care is poor, it is getting to that care so needed by our veterans and serving men and women. Long wait lists, screening evaluations with a margin of 17% error – meaning one in five servicemen and women have been incorrectly diagnosed and/or treated. And, if we do this to the ones most deserving of our care, respect, and thanks, how well do you visualize our health care being administrated by and through Obamacare? Just a thought.

God bless America, the men and women who serve her, and those who are proud to be named Americans. Not a hypehated American. Just plain and simple: I am an American.

16 thoughts on “Memorial Day: Memories and a heartfelt Thank You to all Servicemen and women

  1. Lovely. God bless our Veterans.
    If you have time for a little drive, go over to Fircrest (Tacoma) off of Hwy 16 at Center Street: They have the main street lined in fresh bright American flags. Looks positively divine. Yes. Divine…as in Providence. What a Country!

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  2. The sales don’t represent the appreciation the people have for our service people. I’m glad you said all of this, because it isn’t representative of what we believe Memorial Day means.

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    • I was thinking of your service as I wrote this, Mags. And the skill, precision and painstaking care you deliver at Boeing in being as close to nano in your measurements re quality (paraphrasing poorly).

      Your point between the differences of ACA (Affordabe Care Act) being health insurance and the VA being health care is valid. I did try to make the distinction that it was in the administration of the Act, as in the Administration of the VA that one might find similarities.

      As always, I am proud to know you as my friend and I thank you for serving our country. HuntMode

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  3. Hunt, So so many things, heck almost everything about our national holidays have been commercialized, and no holiday is immune to such commercialization. I have become immune to holiday commercials.

    But like you I am greatly concerned for the health and wellbeing of our service men and women. Our veterans deserve better than what they are getting. Most of their health issues that bring them to the VA Hospitals are a direct result of their service to our country. The problems of inadequate care, missed diagnosed, cooking the books, and on and on, are not recent problems. These problems predate Obama by years and years, administration after administration, budget cut after budget cut. This is clearly a case of where throwing money at it is one of the best solutions. Another solution would be to mandate that all Senators and Congressmen and their families must use the VA system as their 1st choice in health care. I suspect that the services at VA facilities would become the best in the world very rapidly. Like you I am thankful each day for the men and women who serve to protect me, who are willing to lay their lives on the line for me. Bless them, bless this country. Just my thoughts. Take care, Bill

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    • Bill, you are remarkable. In your spirited defense of our serving men and women and our veterans, not once did you mention your extensive duty in the Navy, then followed by public service. Thank you for all you have done.

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  4. Bill, Thank you! Thank you for your loyalty, your service, and for the words that bring focus on that part of our country’s patriotism that few outsiders see or understand. We are unique in our pursuit and enjoyment of commercialism. We have nearly perfected it. That doesn’t mean we have forsaken those sacrifices or the people that made them. We forget that 14 years of war has created millions more veterans than the government can manage. I won’t elaborate the point, I’ll just say that if the country is going to undertake the business of war, then our government and its people should understand the cost doesn’t stop after the last bullet is fired. no, the cost has just begun and it collects a high interest. We need to pay this bill or turn away from the ugly business of martial plans delivered by force of arms and accept any consequence that follows.

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    • Willy Nilly, glad to have your input, especially “… if the country is going to undertake the business of war, then our government and its people should understand the cost doesn’t stop after the last bullet is fired. no, the cost has just begun and it collects a high interest. We need to pay this bill …”

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  5. Pingback: Quotes to Remember Our Fallen Heroes | Prayers and Promises

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