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Memorial Day:

A Day To Pause And Honor

Memorial Day is a day for us all to pause and honor the men and women of the Armed Forces who have paid the ulitimate price.  We enjoy the freedoms that we have because of the brave men and women who answered the call to duty.  Did you know, right now around the world, 1,473,900 men and women are defending our freedom by serving active duty.  There are nearly 10,000 still in Afghanistan and Iraq. 

Memorial Day began as an occasion to honor those who fought and died in the Civil War. Places in both the North and South claim to have originated it, from Macon, Ga., and Richmond, Va., to Boalsburg, Pa., and Carbondale, Ill. But in 1966, Congress and President Lyndon Johnson declared Waterloo, N.Y., the birthplace of Memorial Day. There, a ceremony on May 5, 1866, honored local Civil War veterans. Businesses closed and residents flew flags at half-staff. Supporters of Waterloo's claim say observances in other places were informal, not community-wide or one-time events.


After World War I the day was expanded to honor the service people of all American wars. In 1971 Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress, though it is still often called Decoration Day.


Thus, the men and women we honor this Memorial Day are all those who have served this great nation from its founding 239 years ago--since the Revolutionary War, we have lost 1,010,485 men and women in combat--as well as all those who defend us now all around the globe.  Let us all pause and give honor to those who have served and continue to serve and thank God for their service.