A Memorial Reminder

The following is part of a post that I wrote on Memorial Day 2010. I’ve re-posted it each year since then, because each year I see signs which indicate that it bears repeating.  And sadly, each year since, more men and women have lost their lives in the service of our country.

 I post it again this year to honor them all. 

This year, though, rather than putting it up ON Memorial Day, I’m doing it before the weekend.  Please share the link if you are moved to do so, talk to your older children about it, maybe carve some time in between barbeques and family fun to show respect at a Veteran’s Cemetery. If nothing else, pray silently or observe a thoughtful moment of silence.  

It matters.

  xoxo ~Ri


In Flanders fields the poppies blow

Between the crosses, row on row,

That mark our place; and in the sky

The larks, still bravely singing, fly

Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead. Short days ago

We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,

Loved, and were loved, and now we lie

In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:

To you from failing hands we throw

The torch; be yours to hold it high.

If ye break faith with us who die

We shall not sleep, though poppies grow

In Flanders fields.


Written by Canadian physician and Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae

on 3 May 1915 (World War I)

after he witnessed the death of his friend,

Lieutenant Alexis Helmer, 22 years old,

the day before.


That grows on fields where valor led,

It seems to signal to the skies

That blood of heroes never dies.


1915 – Written by US Professor Moina Michael,

inspired by the poem “In Flanders Field”


Memorial Day, Gravestones, Cemetery, Flags

Photo by my beautiful friend, Reenie - @marleyone

Memorial Day.

I have a hard time with this Holiday. Well, to be more specific – I have a hard time with the way the Holiday is “celebrated” these days.

Is it me, or for many people, has Memorial Day just become the signal to the start of Summer…a day off work which creates a three day weekend filled with BBQ and picnics and trips to the beach? Oh, sure – we give a cursory thought to Veterans, in between making the potato salad and firing up the grill. We’re thankful – I’m not insinuating otherwise – but then, after a brief pause – we get on with the fun, right?

*sigh* That’s not how it was supposed to be.

I’ll spare you all the details on the History of the Holiday, but suffice it to say that prior to the governmental decision to change the original date so as to create this “Three Day Weekend”, Memorial Day carried a much more somber tone.

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service.

Since the Civil War. DIED. Not served – that’s Veterans Day. I’m a big fan of Veterans Day, because we can ACTUALLY thank a living, breathing person for their military service.

But today is for those who can’t enjoy a burger, or a trip to the beach.

Today is for those who are missed every minute of every day by families who try to struggle on with life without them.

Today is for those whose faded photos may sit atop fireplace mantels as a “familial decoration” to the younger generations of their family.

Today is for those whose graves are unmarked, whose families have long since forgotten their pain, their anguish, how their young lives were cut shortfor no other reason but that they chose to defend the freedoms of American citizens by carrying out the directives of those who govern our nation.

Now, I thought carefully about how I worded that last phrase. For a moment, forget patriotism; forget flag waving; forget heroism; forget pride. I think those sentiments are misplaced today. They are NOBLE sentiments, to be sure. It is necessary to our survival as a country that men and women with honor, bravery and courage volunteer to serve in our Armed Forces. Their presence and readiness and training and will to fight if required IS what keeps us safe.

But when they are gone; when they passed from this Earth as a result of a gunshot or an explosion or a bayonet wound or an airplane crash or drowning or a failed parachute opening, as in the case of my brother, Rock…then they are gone. No amount of patriotism can bring them back, and the horror and pain of death overtakes all.

Sure, we can be proud of their willingness to serve, of the sacrifice of self they gave in putting on a uniform at all…but all the flagwaving in the world will not change the stark reality.

Lest you think that I am leaning toward the traitorous in my thinking, please be assured that the very opposite is the case. I’ll spare you the Roll Call, but suffice it to say that nearly every male member (and a few female cousins) in both my family and my husband’s has served in the United States Armed Forces…some back to and including the Civil and Revolutionary Wars. I spent 33 years of my life as either a Navy Brat or a Navy Wife. I am patriotic, I am proud, and if my son Liam chooses to someday serve, I will support him with my whole heart in that decision.

But if he does, then I will treat every day like I do Memorial Day; as a day of prayer for our leaders and the leaders of the nations of the world.

I will pray that they reflect on the raw, painful meaning of this day.

I pray that they look into the faces of those in service, who are still alive, and review more carefully every decision made that will affect them.

That they would put aside arrogance, greed and pride and put the highest value on life.

That they would afford those who serve the best equipment, best training and best support available in return for their service.

That they would do all in their power to keep safe those who keep US safe.

*sigh* Okay, I’m down off my soap box. Yeah, I’m going to grill out today, and make potato salad. I’m also going to go the cemetery and put flowers and a flag on my brother’s grave…and wish we could have a burger and a beer together. Or maybe some corn on the cob…

Ri and Rock, Summer 1969


( “To help re-educate and remind Americans of the true meaning of Memorial Day, the “National Moment of Remembrance” resolution was passed on Dec 2000 which asks that at 3 p.m. local time, for all Americans “To voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of Remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to ‘Taps.”)

47 Responses to A Memorial Reminder
  1. Party supplies Johannesburg
    September 28, 2012 | 9:32 pm

    Whoa! This blog looks exactly like my old one!
    It’s on a completely different subject but it has pretty much the same layout and design. Superb choice of colors!

  2. Deal Shopping Vicenza
    October 25, 2012 | 4:01 am

    Hiya very nice blog!! Man .. Excellent .. Wonderful .. I will bookmark your web site and take the feeds additionally?I’m satisfied to seek out so many helpful info right here within the post, we’d like work out more techniques in this regard, thank you for sharing. . . . . .

  3. mika magazine
    November 6, 2012 | 5:16 pm

    hi!,I like your writing very so much! proportion we be in contact extra approximately your post on AOL? I require a specialist on this area to resolve my problem. Maybe that is you! Having a look forward to peer you.

  4. Hi, i believe that i saw you visited my website thus i got here to return the choose?.I am trying to in finding things to enhance my site!I suppose its good enough to make use of a few of your ideas!!

  5. – Últimas noticias en Español de EEUU y Latinoamerica

    • Anas
      November 26, 2014 | 1:06 pm

      , adding that it’s ptalicularry true in Kitsap County, because of the stable military presence and the housing prices compared with the market closer to Seattle. We’re still a great value over here. Do you honestly believe this? Kitsap is extra-super-special? The military is a moderating influence? We are a great value?Why didn’t the military moderate the rapid price increase and building boom? Is the Navy paying 60-100% higher salaries since ’02? What is the cause of all the building? Why is every school district (X-BI) experiencing declining enrollment? Why don’t the economic realities that are killing Ft. Myers, San Diego, Boston, Monterey, Vegas, Phoenix, as well as Spain and Australia have any interest in a one industry, middle class, rural community? How can price to income ratios in excess of 10 be considered any kind of good value? Poulsbo is overpriced, even with Bainbridge incomes. Silverdale? Even worse.I understand talking up’ your book, but good grief.

      • Patience
        April 28, 2016 | 2:04 pm

        Hi Paulo. Take a look at A Small Orange (ao)mllsrange.coma. I’ve been with them for a year now and the uptime of their servers are great. Support has been very responsive so far.

      • http://www.soulduster.com/
        May 12, 2016 | 8:49 pm

        How’d Jamal Wilson look running the ball? Big dropoff from Cox and Broadnax, or did he look capable of filling in for them? I had to work all day, so I didn’t have an opportunity to watch.

      • auto insurance
        May 20, 2016 | 10:07 am

        F*ckin’ amazing issues here. I am very satisfied to see your post. Thank you so much and i’m looking forward to contact you. Will you please drop me a e-mail?

      • quote auto insurance
        June 4, 2016 | 8:10 am

        I’m not easily impressed but you’ve done it with that posting.

      • http://www.camillotuxedo.com/
        July 28, 2016 | 9:11 am

        There’s a secret about your post. ICTYBTIHTKY

      • solution-tree.com
        October 7, 2016 | 1:13 pm

        Åååå Sunwing resort och barn är lika med en toppen semester. Vi har tre barn och bland de bästa semestrarna vi har haft tillbringades på Sunwing resort. Hoppas ni får en underbar resa!Själv måste jag jobba då jag på senare år blivit en fattig student. :) Lite semester blir det med familjen också men vi har inget inbokat ännu.Kram kramJeanette

      • http://www./
        November 15, 2016 | 6:17 am

        There’s a terrific amount of knowledge in this article!

    • Mohammad
      March 8, 2015 | 12:11 am

      This has been the highlight of my day. Sooo funny- this woman is my Grumpy’s dream wife. Until she spent 24/7 in his capomny and grew a set, of course. I’m a full time nurse, mother of 4/5 and a human being. Being a wife comes somewhere below that. Sorry grumpy- just what it is! My reality is that the best way to my heart (read vagina) is through being an outstanding dad. Being a great lover is so yesterday. He’s a bit behind on that message. So it’s my day off lounging in bed past 8am (when the kids are gone) is percieved as foreplay. Laugh/smile before 8pm is flirting. Making eye contact after 8pm is a direct come-on. NO way in Hell does he get the last word in any major decision. I’d be calling in sick just to fulfill his fantasies! I’m not sure he’ll ever be the responsible adult he promised. On the other hand, since I (too) still laugh at my farts, if he ever grew up I’d probably be in trouble!

    • Bishnu
      April 10, 2015 | 3:24 pm

      A few years ago I cycled trgouhh Bastogne and there are plenty of signs left over from the war. Actually, as you know better than me I’m sure, the whole area where the northern Classics run has seen an inordinate amount of death and destruction, particularly from the two World Wars, but going back much farther than that. It’s odd to say, but combining a cycling trip and battleground visit in France or Belgium is a great’ holiday. The area around the D-day beaches, for example, is really nice countryside and plenty of good riding. If Band of Brothers comes close to reality, those guys were hard, hard men, to survive in those conditions.

  6. 12 volt Tv dvd Combo 13 inch
    October 5, 2014 | 9:31 pm

    Hmm it looks like your site ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I submitted and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your
    blog. I as well am an aspiring blog writer but
    I’m still new to everything. Do you have any points for beginner blog
    writers? I’d definitely appreciate it.

    • Valentine
      November 26, 2014 | 8:30 pm

      Note from fifth grade teacher whose sttudnes are participating in the Kiwanis essay contest: We have really enjoyed working on this project. It has sparked quite a bit of thinking about the sttudnes own acts of kindness and they want to begin a “Kindness Club” here at school. I’m very proud of their ambition. Our class is writing essays on kindness as part of the Kiwanis essay contest. We have really enjoyed working on this project. It has sparked quite a bit of thinking about the sttudnes own acts of kindness and they want to begin a “Kindness Club” here at school. I’m very proud of their ambition.

    • Sanem
      February 27, 2015 | 8:06 pm

      Hi There,John and I have just confirmed a bokiong through JetSet Travel in Shepparton for your ANZAC Day at Gallipoli 2013 Tour. We are very excited, even at this early stage, and are looking forward to the trip. My husband is very interested in Battlefield tours and this is our first though we are also booked on a Scenic Jewels of Europe cruise in 2013 which will see us vist Nuremburg. I have been watching your website for the past couple of years with interest and we have just now committed to a trip. CheersGail Stanley

    • Jowelita
      April 10, 2015 | 10:37 am

      Beautiful pure love. I’ve had my run with adopting the elerds. It’s so worth it. I got 2 1/2 yrs with my Belle when I adopted her at 15 years old. Just as worth it was my 7 months I got with my 17 year old girl Emma. Just adopted Emmie the youngster of 8 years. Who needs a puppy when you’ve got experienced love . You go Sherri, going to web site to see where I can donate .THANK YOU

  7. deer antler spray gnc
    January 29, 2015 | 9:07 am

    IGF1 Extreme Growth Factor Matrix Deer Antler Spray is just a
    very filtered liquid deer velvet extract. 2004 & Barling.

  8. flickr.com
    January 29, 2015 | 12:42 pm

    whoah this blog is fantastic i really like reading your posts.
    Stay up the great work! You understand, lots of persons are hunting round for
    this information, you can help them greatly.

  9. http://myputlockermovies.com
    January 29, 2015 | 10:13 pm

    Hurrah, that’s what I was exploring for, whbat a data!
    present here at this weblog, thajks admin of this website.

  10. Thank you for the good writeup. It in faact was once a enjoymnt account it.

    Glanbce advanced to more delivered agreeable from you!
    By the way, howw can we be in contact?

  11. blog
    February 16, 2015 | 6:53 pm

    I spend my own time effectively and I develop myself, not my game character.

    Teachers may see a gap inside the core SMET skills of female and minority students for yoiur reasons described above.

    This iis extremely popular ffact in order
    to lure mobile internet custommer for a website.

  12. Hello еveryone, іt’s my first pay a visit at this website,
    аnd article is truly fruitful іn support of mе, ҝeep սp
    posting these types of сontent.

  13. win powerball lottery guaranteed
    May 8, 2015 | 12:43 pm

    The protagonists were firstly, Patrick Mc –
    Gavock an incredibly clued up former banker whose blog rejoices in the name
    in the Complete Banker win powerball lottery guaranteed the following tips may
    help people that need to acquire online payday cash advances.

  14. live tranny cams
    May 28, 2015 | 11:14 am

    This condition sometimes requires the removal of
    implants. In some cases male-to-female transgendered people will undergo hormone replacement therapy and a breast
    implant to help with their life as a woman. Naturally such a male meets a tempting transsexual woman and finds, he

  15. Therese
    June 23, 2015 | 6:26 am

    Members can be sure to find ebony tgirls, Latina shemales, TMILFs, post
    op tgirls and shemales that dig on shemales. They are the
    people who had already finished the completed sex reassignment surgery and they did not
    retain any male characteristics. For Breaking Online Poker News Check out Poker – News – Boy.

  16. cvs pharmacy coupons
    August 3, 2015 | 8:04 am

    Hi mates, how is the whole thing, and what you desire to say concerning this post, in my view its truly amazing designed for me.

  17. Cristina
    October 8, 2015 | 11:52 pm

    This exclusive assortment of just ten villas is contained within a protected gated neighborhood with full rental and
    property management services readily available.

  18. meine Rezension hier
    February 3, 2016 | 5:15 pm

    Hier werden die heissesten Anal-Orgien gefeiert!

  19. unit
    February 22, 2016 | 6:46 am

    garcinia cambogia gnc herbal plus forskolin pure coleus forskohlii root extract organic green coffee bean extract powder wholesale acai beads china where to buy mangosteen juice in malaysia hoodia gordonii cultivation theory of communication plantago psyllium detoxifying chitosan insects pictures guar gum shampoo lipozene gives me diarrhea treatment glucomannan headache behind eyes

    • Sunshine
      April 28, 2016 | 1:08 pm

      Wollte umsteigen, aber werde das Teil retournieren! Laute Festplatte (es knackt unentwegt). Toi8talnu&#22q;t = inakzeptabel! Der Preis wird bald enorm sinken, wetten? Ich würde den Mini aus dieser Produktion aber auch mit niedrigerem Preis nicht haben wollen.

  20. What’s up every one, here every person is sharing such familiarity, thus it’s pleasant to read this blog, and I used to pay a visit this webpage everyday.

  21. Hola! I’ve been following your site for a long time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from New Caney Tx! Just wanted to mention keep up the fantastic work!

  22. I needed to thank you for this good read!! I certainly enjoyed every little bit of it. I’ve got you saved as a favorite to check out new stuff you post…

  23. With havin so much content do you ever run into any issues of plagorism or copyright infringement? My site has a lot of unique content I’ve either written myself or outsourced but it seems a lot of it is popping it up all over the internet without my authorization. Do you know any techniques to help protect against content from being ripped off? I’d really appreciate it.

  24. Ahaa, its good conversation concerning this piece of writing at this place at this blog, I have read all that, so at this time me also commenting here.

  25. Hey! I’m at work browsing your blog from my new iphone 3gs! Just wanted to say I love reading your blog and look forward to all your posts! Keep up the superb work!

  26. Every weekend i used to go to see this web site, for the reason that i wish for enjoyment, since this this site conations really fastidious funny material too.

  27. Ahaa, its fastidious discussion concerning this post here at this website, I have read all that, so at this time me also commenting at this place.

  28. best credit report monitoring site
    June 22, 2016 | 5:22 pm

    For newest information you have to visit
    the web and on the web I found this site as a most excellent website for
    newest updates.
    best credit report monitoring site´s last blog post ..best credit report monitoring site

  29. Lisette
    December 17, 2016 | 5:49 pm

    Every weekend i used to visit this web site, as i want enjoyment, for the reason that this this website conations actually
    pleasant funny data too.
    Lisette´s last blog post ..Lisette

  30. geile titten bilder
    March 20, 2018 | 10:50 am

    Denk daran, es k a n n nur besser werden Guten Morgen Zottel, Nein Schmerzen hab ich nicht direkt,aber es wird zu dicker!!!!Und das Gefühl,das irgentwie alles zu gross ist,vor allem am Rand oben.Ob er da heute gleich was machen kann????Und warum wird das nur soooo ?????Die Wunden heilen glaub ich ganz gut,es scheuert nicht mehr wie anfangs.Ich kann mir einfach nicht vorstellen,das ich damit nun erstmal leben muss,und die Angst vor dem,was noch alles kommt,ist wieder da!!!Ach,menno…..

  31. hobbyhuren hagen
    April 2, 2018 | 9:20 am

    Liebe Grüße koRnthAiclassiGmassaGeFan frau F Frau S.

  32. hobbyhuren marl
    July 25, 2018 | 11:42 am

    Und bei dieser heißen Chat Mature kann ich nur meine wärmste Empfehlung aussprechen.

Leave a Reply

Wanting to leave an <em>phasis on your comment?

CommentLuv badge