Make sure to click the Word / Link near the end of this history lesson.
Memorial Day Greetings From NAUS President Wilkerson
I share this with you as today (Memorial Day) is so much more than a three-day weekend holiday.
Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service. It was first officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.
In 1915, inspired by the poem “In Flanders Fields,” Moina Michael replied with her own poem:
We cherish too, the Poppy red
That grows on fields where valor led,
It seems to signal to the skies
That blood of heroes never dies.
She then conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial Day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war. She was the first to wear one, and sold poppies to her friends and coworkers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need.
Since the late 50s on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3d U.S. Infantry (The Old Guard) place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery. They then patrol 24 hours a day during the weekend to ensure that each flag remains standing.
Use this link to take you to perhaps one of the best video depictions of the true meaning of Memorial Day and the price others have paid for our freedoms today.
Old Glory will be at half-staff in my garden until noon.
May God continue to Bless America and all those who keep her safe.
Thomas L. Wilkerson
Major General, USMC (Ret)
The National Association for Uniformed Services (NAUS) www.naus.org
Post expires at 8:03am on Sunday May 31st, 2015