Memorial Day should be more celebrated in our communities. We have been given the gift of freedom at the highest cost; our own people. Thanking a Veteran for all they have done is the greatest gift you can give to them.
Many cities and towns have claimed to be the birth place of Memorial Day or Declaration Day so it is difficult to pin point the origin of its birth. President Lyndon Johnson named Waterloo, New York as the birthplace in 1966. It is not important where or who proclaimed this day be birthed, but the fact that it is around at all.
The official proclamation of Memorial Day was given by General John Logan on May 5, 1868. Twenty-five days later flowers were placed on the grave sites of the Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The original holiday was to honor those who died fighting in the Civil War until after World War I transpired; then it became a holiday to honor Americans who died fighting in any war. The southern states still have an additional day to honor their dead as they always have.
In the late 1950â€™s, the Thursday before Memorial Day 1200 soldiers of the U.S. Infantry place a small flag at each gravestone in the Arlington National Cemetery. Each flag is patrolled for the entirety of the weekend to make sure that all are still standing. Unfortunately, this courtesy to our fallen heroes is not always honored in other areas. Many graves are often forgotten and neglected.
Chances are that you know someone in the service today. Shake the hand of a Veteran, tell them how much you appreciate their sacrifice so matter how large or small it may have been.
Honor them, cherish the freedoms they fight for, understand the sacrifice their families make so that we can live better lives. They are the true American heroes. The Ritter Team thanks all of the fallen, retired, and our current servicemen.