Memorial Day Reflections

On Memorial Day, we honor the men and women in the military who gave their lives for our freedom and our country. It also gives us a chance to thank those currently defending the rights and freedoms we hold dear, as well as those who served their country and came safely home. May God bless them all and watch over their families.

In the spirit of the holiday, please enjoy the selections below.

It Has Always Been The Soldier

It is the soldier,
not the President,
who gives us democracy.

It is the soldier,
not the Congress,
who takes care of us.

It is the soldier,
not the reporter,
who has given us Freedom of Press.

It is the soldier,
not the poet,
who has given us Freedom of Speech.

It is the soldier,
not the campus organizer,
who has given us the Freedom to Demonstrate.

It is the soldier,
who salutes the flag,
who serves beneath the flag,
and whose coffin is draped by the flag
that allows the protester to burn the flag.

By Father Dennis O’Brien
Chaplain
United States Marines

*

“The soldier, above all other people, prays for peace, for he must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war.” — General Douglas MacArthur

*

Freedom Isn’t Free

I watched the flag pass by one day.
It fluttered in the breeze.
A young Marine saluted it,
And then he stood at ease.

I looked at him in uniform
So young, so tall, so proud,
With hair cut square and eyes alert
He’d stand out in any crowd.

I thought how many men like him
Had fallen through the years.

How many died on foreign soil?
How many mothers’ tears?
How many pilots’ planes shot down?
How many died at sea?
How many foxholes were soldiers’ graves?

No, freedom isn’t free.

I heard the sound of taps one night,
When everything was still
I listened to the bugler play
And felt a sudden chill.

I wondered just how many times
That taps had meant “Amen,”
When a flag had draped a coffin
Of a brother or a friend.

I thought of all the children,
Of the mothers and the wives,
Of fathers, sons and husbands
With interrupted lives.
I thought about a graveyard
At the bottom of the sea
Of unmarked graves in Arlington.

No, freedom isn’t free.

By Unknown Author



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