A Memorial Day to remember
May 25, 2012
Another summer is upon us, as marked by our upcoming three-day weekend. No doubt, there’ll be lots of department store sales and plenty of backyard barbecues. But too often lost in the Memorial Day festivities is the holiday’s more somber meaning—a day of remembrance for those who’ve died in the nation’s service.
For so many families among us, the wounds of loss are fresh and deep. During the past decade, more than 6,400 men and women have died in Iraq and Afghanistan. My prayers go out to their heartbroken loved ones. The trauma, of course, does not stop there. At this moment, thousands upon thousands of others are struggling mightily to overcome debilitating trauma to their bodies and minds.
I hope you can find a few minutes to commemorate Memorial Day. To help you, the county’s Department of Military and Veterans Affairs has compiled its annual comprehensive list of events, including many that offer special discounts to members of the military and their families. Maybe one way to recognize those who’ve perished in our recent wars is simply to explore the Washington Post’s excellent Faces of the Fallen. Among my plans for the day, I’ll be at the Canoga Park Memorial Day Parade.
My fondest hope is that those individuals now bravely serving in danger zones across the planet will return to us safely so that next year we can celebrate, rather than mourn, them.