Memorial Day Weekend 2022 is a time of getting together with family and friends as the summer begins. It is also a time to remember the past and present of service people that gave their lives for a country they loved.
Memorial Day known as Declaration Day, is a federal holiday for paying our respects to U. S. military personnel who have died while serving in the United States of America Armed Services. It is the last Monday in May it was formerly observed on May 30 from 1868 to 1970.
It is a weekend in which we carry our patriotism on our sleeves and in our hearts for the men and women who represented us in any battle they participated in to protect our freedom. We love our red, white, and blue and wear the colors proudly, and we fly our American flag to honor all these brave souls. Many people go to cemeteries to place flowers or small American flags on loved ones’ graves.
I remember my brothers being Boy Scouts and getting up very early to place flags down the main street in our small Illinois town.
I also remember the ceremonies I attended honoring all the fallen soldiers who had given the ultimate sacrifice. Even as a child, I understood what these people did for me to live the life I do today.
Researching family genealogy has opened my eyes and heart wider to understand what these people went through during their time in the military. My father, Merle Otto Weik, was in WW II and was shot down in his plane and survived with the help of others in a foreign country. I had an uncle who was part of the Normandy Invasion on June 6, 1944.
Several relatives were in the Civil War where they had to choose a side to fight for Union or Confederate or against their neighbors or friends.
We all have had relatives or friends in any of these wars:
The American Revolution – 1775-1783
War of 1812 – 1812-1815
Indian Wars – 1817-1898
Mexican War – 1846-1848
Civil War – 1861-1865
Spanish-American War – 1898-1902
World War I – 1917-1918
World War II – 1941-1945
Korean War – 1950-1953
Vietnam War – 1964-1975
Desert Shield/Desert Storm – 1990-1991
and the Global War on Terror
Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqui Freedom.
These men and women gave their all for us, and the reason we honor them this weekend. I am grateful for each one.
Memorial Day Weekend 2022 – different from the rest is a sad one. We remember all the service people. But this week, we remember teachers and children who were killed by a person who had no heart or soul and took his tortured mind into a school to prove his point by using a gun as his teaching tool. The last week of school is always exciting and bittersweet. Everyone is saying goodbye to their teachers and hello to a new grade where they can continue to grow, flourish and thrive. Awards and graduations are part of the school experience for parents, teachers, and schoolchildren.
School is supposed to be safe where dreams are planted along with goals to reach those dreams. When did we decide in this society that children are not a priority? Children matter they are our future generations. Teachers and school staff all play an active role in keeping children safe and sound in their learning environment. You take on that responsibility when you sign your contract each year. They are as precious as your own. They look to us for that smile, that hug, that feeling that everything is going to be okay every day when that school bell rings. If you want these young lives to grow up and to lead our country someday, then it is our responsibility to see to it that under our watch they can and will accomplish that goal.
So, we thank our servicemen and women who have given their all for this nation, and who put their life on the line to keep us safe from harm. What were we doing to keep an eighteen-year-old from buying the type of gun used only for the battlefield?
I had the honor, of working, as an aide and school secretary in an elementary school for seventeen years. In those seventeen years, I dealt with two issues that endangered the six hundred children under the watch of principals and staff. The goal was the same – the children came first!
In closing, are we living up to the soldiers who kept our freedom secure, or would they be disappointed in us for not keeping their children safe?
Our military people know this bible verse well and answer the call every time. Did we?
Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”