Monday, May 25, 2009

In Remembrance of Those Who Laid Down Their Lives For Our Freedom

(this is a re-run of last year's Memorial Day column, which I wouldn't dream of trying to top this year)

Today is Memorial Day. It is the unofficial beginning of the summer picnic season, as we usually break out the grills and cook-out for the first time.

While we are all chomping down on burgers and ribs on Monday, please take time to remember those who gave their lives for our country, the most noble of sacrifices, so we can continue to live free. Say a special prayer for our servicemen and women overseas, that they will be here next year to celebrate with their families and friends.

I'll leave you with this, a poem that I heard countless times while spending Memorial Day with my grandparents, doling out hot dogs and pumping pitchers of birch beer at Elm Tree Post #88, American Legion, in Fishtown.

In Flanders Fields

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved, and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields.

John McCrae
Have a peaceful day.

Related: Memorial Day (


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