“Thanks for Your Service” is what to say to military veterans. It’s appropriate, but let’s not forget especially the veterans who year after year sponsor Memorial Day services.
We are speaking chiefly about members of the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) but there are other veterans’ organizations that sponsor and participate in Memorial Day services. The auxiliaries also provide their valuable support.
Two of the largest programs in this area are in Washington and Union. There are other services in this area, including the one at Bethel Cemetery at Labadie where the grave of Medal of Honor awardee George Phillips is located.
In recent years the Memorial Day services are drawing more people, which is a sign of a renewal of patriotism throughout the country. Even when attendance was light, the veterans’ organizations continued their efforts for public observances to salute military veterans. These organizations are committed to remind people of the sacrifices made by men and women who served their country whether they served one month or 30 or more years. All are remembered on Memorial Day, especially those killed, wounded, missing in action or taken prisoner.
For those veterans who served in combat, there are memories that surface to the front on Memorial Day. They all have the question of, “Why did I make it and... didn’t?” No one can provide an answer. That question lives on and on...
This country has lost so many outstanding young men and women in wars that it is heartbreaking. They were among America’s finest and one wonders about the careers they may have had if they had survived. We’ve lost bright young leaders who undoubtedly would have made great contributions to their communities and to this country. The loss is so great that a value can’t be placed on what could have been.
We say “Thanks for Your Service” to members of all veterans’ organizations that year after year sponsor and participate in Memorial Day programs. They will never let us forget the price paid by those who stepped forward when called to protect this country.