It is 3 PM on Memorial Day. A time designated by Congress as a moment of silence. Therefore, just for a moment, let’s stop and remember the soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure that this great nation remains the brightest beacon for hope and opportunity in the world. Despite our political beliefs and differences, today, right now, we can join in appreciation and remembrance.
I am sincerely thankful to be an American. Having traveled to 18 countries on four different continents, I have become convinced of one thing. America remains the greatest country on earth. This is only possible because of the freedom provided by the sacrifice of so many men and women. Men and women who decided to pursue a higher calling, something greater than themselves. Men and women who were willing to sacrifice their lives for not only family and friends, but for people that they have never met, people like me, present and future generations.
My Uncle, LT Robert Miller, was killed in Vietnam while leading his men as an Infantry Officer. He was a member of the 5Th Marine Regiment, which is the most decorated in Marine Corps history. On his memorial at the Marine Corps Museum is a sobering quote, “WHEN YOU GO HOME, TELL THEM OF US AND SAY, FOR YOUR FREEDOM, WE GAVE OUR TODAY.”
Thus, let's enjoy a break to spend time with family and friends while not losing sight of the true meaning of Memorial Day. The price of freedom is high. Sadly, war often takes our best young men and women. Today, I salute the fallen soldiers and their families, as well as our veterans and those currently serving this great nation. It is our responsibility that their sacrifice is never forgotten.
Along those lines, here is a touching video worth watching:
MIDN Matthew Miller
United States Merchant Marine Academy
Class of 2017