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Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Memorial Day Thoughts

I had a conversation with somebody recently about Memorial Day and it really made me think. The woman I was speaking with told me that she wasn’t going to be able to travel to the cemetery this year to decorate the grave sites of loved ones. Sadly, she said that the generation behind her has never made it a habit of doing so, so she suspected that the grave sites would remain undecorated this year.

Everybody handles death in a different way and everybody has different thoughts about the importance of visiting a cemetery during Memorial Day, but for me the day is a chance to leave a visual reminder that the previous generations are not forgotten by the current generations. The ritual isn’t so much for the dead as it is for the living.

That’s what got me to thinking. Each Memorial Day I usually visit and decorate the graves of loved ones I knew, but I can’t remember the last time I visited and decorated the grave of a family member who died before I was born. I know what cemetery many of them are buried in,
and I have some general idea about where they are buried, but I haven’t visited their graves.

So this year, I’m going to call a relative or two to find out exactly where the graves are located and I’m going to do my part to pay tribute to the generations in my family who died before I was born.


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