Friday, May 23, 2008

Memorial Day 2008

By Edward Smallwood

Memorial Day Weekend is upon us. As we madly go to our movies, barbeques, and sales, we should all take a moment to remember what Memorial Day is really all about.

Memorial Day was started in May of 1868 to commemorate the sacrifices of those who died in the Civil War. At that time it was referred to as Decoration Day, a day meant to decorate the graves of those who died in service to the country in that rebellion. Observance of the day to celebrate those who died in all wars did not start until after World War I.

This Memorial Day I will be remembering my step-grandfather, who served in Italy in World War II. It traumatized him so much that he didn’t begin to talk about it until just a couple of years before he died. I do miss him, and I regret that I know so little of what he went through in that conflict.

I will also be remembering George Swenson, the father of my brother-in-law, Mike Swenson. About a week-and-a-half ago George, a former Marine, Contractor, and REALTOR, suffered a cerebral hemorrhage in his sleep. The next day when he did not get up for his doctor’s appointment, his wife, Shirley, called the ambulance. He had three operations to stop the bleeding in the next 24 hours, but has not awakened. This morning they made the decision to remove his breathing tube, which will happen in about 30 minutes from the time I write this. He is not expected to survive much past that time.

Please, remember those who have left us, but also take the time this weekend to let those still with us know how much you appreciate them.

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