To many Americans, Memorial Day has lost its meaning

The Department of Defense and Department of Veterans Affairs reports that more than 1.1 million American military deaths have occurred since the Revolutionary War. Since 1971, Memorial Day has been observed the last Monday of May. The women brought flowers and tended to the neglected graves.

The Center for the Families of the Fallen at Dover Air Force Base in DE is a handsome place where family members wait for the plane carrying their loved ones who died while serving their country. Although some grave markers were dated years and years ago, there could still be people living who were told about their courage and love of country.

Decoration Day first was marked in 1868, when the Grand Army of the Republic, an organization of Union veterans founded in Decatur, Ill., established it as a time for the nation to decorate the graves of the Union war dead with flowers. It's a day many of us will celebrate with a trip to the lake, the golf course or the pool or by cooking out with friends and family.

Families filled the chapel in the Northampton VA Medical Center for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs annual Memorial Day service.

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Armed police on guard prior to the start of the Great CityGames at Deansgate, in Manchester , England, Friday May 26 , 2017. Manchester is slowly returning to normal, though the damaged arena and adjacent Victoria train station remain closed.

"He also says he's joined by his wife and children in encouraging all Nebraskans to travel safely, to buckle up, and to never drink and drive as they travel over the holiday weekend". Fortunately, most do. Therefore, it is not surprising that by the early 20th century many states and localities had made such observances official. The people who gave everything they had so that we may live in a free society. Conflict continues to take an terrible toll long after some combatants come home; more than 20 American veterans commit suicide each day.

"This is my first Memorial Day service since I retired and I don't know why I haven't come, but this is really emotional for me today", said Al Quist who attended the ceremony. To those not serving, he wished for them to be safe and enjoy a day of freedom that was provided by those who fight for our country.

The causes of war are regrettable, but the courage to serve and sacrifice for the preservation of our nation and the freedoms of the United States should always be remembered with deep gratitude. A place where we may not be able to freely express our opinions or afford the meat for our Memorial Day BBQ.

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