'Flags-In' at Arlington National Cemetery for Memorial Day 2008, originally uploaded by Army.mil.
I am off to the motherland this weekend, back to Wisconsin and home. But please remember what this weekend is about... remember those who gave everything so that we may have what we do today. Let this weekend be about them... not just BBQ's, sales and a day off from work.
The Memorial Day Order:
"The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers, or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country ... and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village and hamlet churchyard in the land.
We are organized, Comrades, as our regulations tell us, for the purpose among other things, "of preserving and strengthening those kind and fraternal feelings which have bound together the soldiers, sailors and Marines, who united to suppress the late rebellion." What can aid more to assure this result than by cherishing tenderly the memory of our heroic dead? We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. All that the consecrated wealth and taste of the nation can add to their adornment and security, is but a fitting tribute to the memory of her slain defenders. Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.
Let us, then, at the time appointed, gather around their sacred remains, and garland the passionless mounds above them with choicest flowers of springtime; let us raise above them the dear old flag they saved; let us in this solemn presence renew our pledge to aid and assist those whom they have left among us a sacred charge upon the Nation's gratitude—the soldier's and sailor's widow and orphan." —General Orders No. 11, Grand Army of the Republic Headquarters