For many Americans, Memorial Day represents the start of summer — the promise of warm, sunny days, evenings illuminated by fireflies, barbecues in the backyard, and trips to the beach.
But Memorial Day is not actually about any of that. It is a day to remember how the men and women of our Armed Forces have answered the call to give their lives to defend the people and the country they love. They have entered into the service willingly, knowing that the price of freedom is extraordinarily high.
The history of this national observance goes back to the Civil War. Following the war, people from both the North and South decorated graves with flags and flowers on what came to be known as “Decoration Day,” to honor the loved ones they had lost.