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Monday, May 25, 2009

Ever Wonder The Difference Between Veteran's Day & Memorial Day?

"The patriot’s blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree." ~Thomas Campbell

What is the difference between Memorial Day and Veteran's Day?

Memorial Day and Veterans Day have everything to do with honoring the living and the dead. Both observances are intended to honor military personnel, but Veterans Day pays homage to all Americans who have worn the nation’s military uniforms, both living and dead, while Memorial Day is a day to remember all U.S. military personnel who died in wars or other military actions.

Memorial Day Facts
  • Memorial Day was declared a federal holiday in 1971.
  • The south refused to honor the dead on Memorial Day until after World War I when the meaning of Memorial Day changed from honoring civil war dead to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war.
  • New York was the 1st state to officially recognize Memorial Day.
  • On Memorial Day, the American flag is flown at half-staff until noon and then raised to full staff.
  • Red Poppies are recognized as the Memorial Day flower (represents the blood shed by soldiers).
  • A national moment of remembrance takes place at 3 p.m Eastern Time.

Freedom Is Not Free
By LCDR Kelly Strong, USCG - Copyright 1981

I watched the flag pass by one day,
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Service man saluted it,
And then he stood at ease.

I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He'd stand out in any crowd.

I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.
How many died on foreign soil
How many mothers' tears?

How many pilots' planes shot down?
How many died at sea
How many foxholes were soldiers' graves?
No, freedom isn't free.

I heard the sound of Taps one night,
When everything was still,
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.

I wondered just how many times
That Taps had meant "Amen,"
When a flag had draped a coffin.
Of a brother or a friend.

I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.

I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.
No, freedom isn't free.

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Kelly's Ideas said...

Great Post!



Debbie said...

Really enjoyed the post today. My dad served in the Army for 22 years. Memorial Day and Veteran's Day have always been special.

Thanks for the history and the beautiful poem.

God is so Good!

♥Mimi♥ said...

We need to continue to share with our young people the meaning of this day lest it become nothing more than a long holiday weekend filled with beer and hot dogs.

Our fallen warriors deserve so much more.

Cari said...

Thank you for this post today. It's important to remember what today is about.

Also, I use Firefox now too and it rocks!

Still loving your blog!



Beth in NC said...

Thank you for sharing this!

Tiffany said...

Thank you for sharing that.

Anna said...

I have wondered before what the difference is. I know people who celebrate Memorial Day as a holiday to remember relatives who have passed, so I was a little confused. Thanks for clearing that up.

Smelling Coffee said...

Thanks for that info! Very helpful. :-)

Muthering Heights said...

Thank you for clearing that up...although the distinction seems obvious, I didn't actually know the difference between the two holidays before!

Lisa @ Stop and Smell the Chocolates said...

Good post! Nice to clear up the differences and that's a great poem.

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