Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

If you are an American or living in the U.S., you are celebrating Memorial Day today. To translate for us Canadians, it's their version of our Remembrance Day. It is held on the last Monday in May to commemorate those men and women who have given their lives in the service of their country. It was originally held on May 30th, the anniversary of the reunification of the North and South, to honour those who died in the Civil War but eventually was expanded to include those who were killed in any war or military action.

My friend Wendy posted a link on Facebook today to a page which had the following quote setting out how to observe this day:

"...gather around their sacred remains and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime....let us in this solemn presence renew our pledges to aid and assist those whom they have left among us as sacred charges upon the Nation's gratitude--the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan." --General John Logan, General Order No. 11, 5 May 1868

A moment of remembrance is held at 3 p.m., people place flags on soldiers' graves and the flag is flown at half-mast until noon.

The Indy 500 is also traditionally held on this day, which makes no sense to me whatsoever as I see no connection between someone driving a race car really fast around a track and a soldier giving their life defending their country but far be it from me to question this long standing tradition!

But in all seriousness, it doesn't hurt for us to pause and remember the fallen, whether they be our own countrymen or those of our neighbours. May they rest in peace.

No comments: