We are facing unprecedented and difficult times. Our constitutional freedoms are being challenged and our economy is crumbling. On this Memorial Day, and in these times, it is especially important that we remember that we are blessed to live in a country with a history of honorable men and women who have given all while fighting for and defending our freedom. Gratitude for the selfless sacrifices of those whose lives have been spent in the pursuit and protection of that freedom requires our eternal vigilance and devotion and cannot begin and end with a mere day of recognition.
According to General Douglas MacArthur, “No man is entitled to the blessings of freedom unless he be vigilant in its preservation.”
In his 1981 Inaugural Address, President Ronald Reagan expressed not only the hopes and aspirations of the American people, but the many sacrifices necessary to preserve and protect them. You can watch here.
“Freedom and the dignity of the individual have been more available and assured here than in any other place on earth. The price for this freedom at times has been high, but we have never been unwilling to pay that price. …
“… On the far shore [of the Potomac River are] the sloping hills of Arlington National Cemetery, with its row upon row of simple white markers bearing crosses or Stars of David. They add up to only a tiny fraction of the price that has been paid for our freedom.
“Under one such a marker lies a young man, Martin Treptow, who left his job in a small town barber shop in 1917 to go to France with the famed Rainbow Division. There, on the Western front, he was killed trying to carry a message between battalions under heavy fire. We’re told that on his body was found a diary. On the flyleaf under the heading, “My Pledge,” he had written these words:
“‘America must win this war. Therefore, I will work; I will save; I will sacrifice; I will endure; I will fight cheerfully and do my utmost, as if the issue of the whole struggle depended on me alone.’
We are grateful, especially as we reflect today, for those who have given all as they too have taken this challenge to work, save, sacrifice, endure and do their utmost to preserve the very freedom that lies at the heart of this nation.
Let us remember today and truly, never forget.