Talk with the Doc

Memorial Day a time of contemplation

Dr. Jim Surrell, Journal columnist

On the last Monday in May we celebrate our annual Memorial Day in the USA. This very special day will be celebrated next week on May 29.

It was in 1971 that Congress declared Memorial Day to be a national holiday to always be celebrated on the last Monday in the month of May. It is so very important for all of us to recall that Memorial Day is truly a special time for us to remember all our military heroes who have given their lives in service to us all.

It is so fitting at this time to recall the ultimate sacrifice of so many to protect our personal freedom and to help preserve the liberty that is so precious to our special way of life in the United States.

Memorial Day celebrations will be held in many communities throughout our wonderful Upper Peninsula and all across this great country. It is so important that we continue to appreciate our military personnel who have served our nation and made the ultimate sacrifice of giving their life for their country.

As we remember and honor those who have died for our country, it is important to also appreciate any and all who have ever served in our military. Further, we need to be sure to honor and respect all those personnel who continue to courageously serve in our military today.

Memorial Day was originally called Decoration Day. Of course, Memorial Day is a day of remembrance for those who have died in service to our country. Memorial Day was first widely observed on May 30, 1868, to commemorate the sacrifices of soldiers who gave their all while serving in the military.

During that first national celebration 155 years ago, in 1868, Gen. James Garfield made a speech at Arlington National Cemetery. Following this first Memorial Day celebration, there were an estimated 5,000 participants who helped decorate the graves of the more than 20,000 soldiers who were buried there. Every year, our national Memorial Day is continued to be celebrated at Arlington National Cemetery with a special ceremony.

By the late 1800s, many more cities and communities observed their own Memorial Day celebrations. Then, after World War I, Memorial Day became a special day and time for our nation to honor all our brave military personnel who died in all of America’s previous wars.

On this very special day, many people visit cemeteries and offer memorial celebrations on Memorial Day to honor and mourn those who died while serving in the U.S. military. Many volunteers also place American flags on the graves of military personnel in national cemeteries, and at many local cemeteries as well. As we enjoy our Memorial Day, let us always appreciate all our past and present military personnel to whom we all owe so much. It is also very important that we teach our children and grandchildren about the true meaning of Memorial Day as a time for us to remember and honor those who have died in service to our great country.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Dr. Jim Surrell is the author of the best-selling SOS (Stop Only Sugar) Diet book and his new Joke Book, entitled “Laughter Is Good Medicine.” Dr. Jim’s website is sosdietbook.com.


Today's breaking news and more in your inbox

I'm interested in (please check all that apply)
Are you a paying subscriber to the newspaper *

Starting at $4.62/week.

Subscribe Today