Memorial Day is a time for us to remember and pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice in service to America. It is not only a day to honor our veterans, but to thank them as well. We certainly would not enjoy the blessings we do here in Michigan if it were not for their dedication.
I would also like to thank the families of those who serve for their sacrifices. They endure while their son or daughter, brother or sister, husband or wife preserve our freedoms and spread democracy across the globe. All too often they never return home.
Memorial Day was originally known as Decoration Day because it was set aside as a time to honor those killed in the Civil War by decorating their graves. While first widely observed in 1868 to commemorate the sacrifices of Civil War soldiers, after World War I, observations began to honor those who died in all of America’s wars.
I encourage everyone to do something to honor the brave men and women who fought and died for our great nation as well as those now serving. Many such heroes live and work right here in Southwest Michigan and across our state. Thank a veteran for his or her service, or proudly display the American flag.
Most of all, remember our fallen heroes who gave their lives so that we could remain free. We owe them a great debt. Because of fine men and women like them our nation remains strong and the envy of the world.