Author Topic: Memorial Day  (Read 10855 times)

Crafty_Dog

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Memorial Day
« on: May 28, 2007, 07:44:03 AM »


America's Honor
The stories behind Memorial Day.

BY PETER COLLIER
Monday, May 28, 2007 12:01 a.m. EDT

Once we knew who and what to honor on Memorial Day: those who had given all their tomorrows, as was said of the men who stormed the beaches of Normandy, for our todays. But in a world saturated with selfhood, where every death is by definition a death in vain, the notion of sacrifice today provokes puzzlement more often than admiration. We support the troops, of course, but we also believe that war, being hell, can easily touch them with an evil no cause for engagement can wash away. And in any case we are more comfortable supporting them as victims than as warriors.

Former football star Pat Tillman and Marine Cpl. Jason Dunham were killed on the same day: April 22, 2004. But as details of his death fitfully emerged from Afghanistan, Tillman has become a metaphor for the current conflict--a victim of fratricide, disillusionment, coverup and possibly conspiracy. By comparison, Dunham, who saved several of his comrades in Iraq by falling on an insurgent's grenade, is the unknown soldier. The New York Times, which featured Abu Ghraib on its front page for 32 consecutive days, put the story of Dunham's Medal of Honor on the third page of section B.

Not long ago I was asked to write the biographical sketches for a book featuring formal photographs of all our living Medal of Honor recipients. As I talked with them, I was, of course, chilled by the primal power of their stories. But I also felt pathos: They had become strangers--honored strangers, but strangers nonetheless--in our midst.

In my own boyhood, figures such as Jimmy Doolittle, Audie Murphy and John Basilone were household names. And it was assumed that what they had done defined us as well as them, telling us what kind of nation we were. But the 110 Medal recipients alive today are virtually unknown except for a niche audience of warfare buffs. Their heroism has become the military equivalent of genre painting. There's something wrong with that.
What they did in battle was extraordinary. Jose Lopez, a diminutive Mexican-American from the barrio of San Antonio, was in the Ardennes forest when the Germans began the counteroffensive that became the Battle of the Bulge. As 10 enemy soldiers approached his position, he grabbed a machine gun and opened fire, killing them all. He killed two dozen more who rushed him. Knocked down by the concussion of German shells, he picked himself up, packed his weapon on his back and ran toward a group of Americans about to be surrounded. He began firing and didn't stop until all his ammunition and all that he could scrounge from other guns was gone. By then he had killed over 100 of the enemy and bought his comrades time to establish a defensive line.

Yet their stories were not only about killing. Several Medal of Honor recipients told me that the first thing they did after the battle was to find a church or some other secluded spot where they could pray, not only for those comrades they'd lost but also the enemy they'd killed.

Desmond Doss, for instance, was a conscientious objector who entered the army in 1942 and became a medic. Because of his religious convictions and refusal to carry a weapon, the men in his unit intimidated and threatened him, trying to get him to transfer out. He refused and they grudgingly accepted him. Late in 1945 he was with them in Okinawa when they got cut to pieces assaulting a Japanese stronghold.

Everyone but Mr. Doss retreated from the rocky plateau where dozens of wounded remained. Under fire, he treated them and then began moving them one by one to a steep escarpment where he roped them down to safety. Each time he succeeded, he prayed, "Dear God, please let me get just one more man." By the end of the day, he had single-handedly saved 75 GIs.

Why did they do it? Some talked of entering a zone of slow-motion invulnerability, where they were spectators at their own heroism. But for most, the answer was simpler and more straightforward: They couldn't let their buddies down.

Big for his age at 14, Jack Lucas begged his mother to help him enlist after Pearl Harbor. She collaborated in lying about his age in return for his promise to someday finish school. After training at Parris Island, he was sent to Honolulu. When his unit boarded a troop ship for Iwo Jima, Mr. Lucas was ordered to remain behind for guard duty. He stowed away to be with his friends and, discovered two days out at sea, convinced his commanding officer to put him in a combat unit rather than the brig. He had just turned 17 when he hit the beach, and a day later he was fighting in a Japanese trench when he saw two grenades land near his comrades.

He threw himself onto the grenades and absorbed the explosion. Later a medic, assuming he was dead, was about to take his dog tag when he saw Mr. Lucas's finger twitch. After months of treatment and recovery, he returned to school as he'd promised his mother, a ninth-grader wearing a Medal of Honor around his neck.





The men in World War II always knew, although news coverage was sometimes scant, that they were in some sense performing for the people at home. The audience dwindled during Korea. By the Vietnam War, the journalists were omnipresent, but the men were performing primarily for each other. One story that expresses this isolation and comradeship involves a SEAL team ambushed on a beach after an aborted mission near North Vietnam's Cua Viet river base.
After a five-hour gunfight, Cmdr. Tom Norris, already a legend thanks to his part in a harrowing rescue mission for a downed pilot (later dramatized in the film BAT-21), stayed behind to provide covering fire while the three others headed to rendezvous with the boat sent to extract them. At the water's edge, one of the men, Mike Thornton, looked back and saw Tom Norris get hit. As the enemy moved in, he ran back through heavy fire and killed two North Vietnamese standing over Norris's body. He lifted the officer, barely alive with a shattered skull, and carried him to the water and then swam out to sea where they were picked up two hours later.

The two men have been inseparable in the 30 years since.

The POWs of Vietnam configured a mini-America in prison that upheld the values beginning to wilt at home as a result of protest and dissension. John McCain tells of Lance Sijan, an airman who ejected over North Vietnam and survived for six weeks crawling (because of his wounds) through the jungle before being captured.

Close to death when he reached Hanoi, Sijan told his captors that he would give them no information because it was against the code of conduct. When not delirious, he quizzed his cellmates about camp security and made plans to escape. The North Vietnamese were obsessed with breaking him, but never did. When he died after long sessions of torture Sijan was, in Sen. McCain's words, "a free man from a free country."

Leo Thorsness was also at the Hanoi Hilton. The Air Force pilot had taken on four MiGs trying to strafe his wingman who had parachuted out of his damaged aircraft; Mr. Thorsness destroyed two and drove off the other two. He was shot down himself soon after this engagement and found out by tap code that his name had been submitted for the Medal.

One of Mr. Thorsness's most vivid memories from seven years of imprisonment involved a fellow prisoner named Mike Christian, who one day found a grimy piece of cloth, perhaps a former handkerchief, during a visit to the nasty concrete tank where the POWs were occasionally allowed a quick sponge bath. Christian picked up the scrap of fabric and hid it.

Back in his cell he convinced prisoners to give him precious crumbs of soap so he could clean the cloth. He stole a small piece of roof tile which he laboriously ground into a powder, mixed with a bit of water and used to make horizontal stripes. He used one of the blue pills of unknown provenance the prisoners were given for all ailments to color a square in the upper left of the cloth. With a needle made from bamboo wood and thread unraveled from the cell's one blanket, Christian stitched little stars on the blue field.

"It took Mike a couple weeks to finish, working at night under his mosquito net so the guards couldn't see him," Mr. Thorsness told me. "Early one morning, he got up before the guards were active and held up the little flag, waving it as if in a breeze. We turned to him and saw it coming to attention and automatically saluted, some of us with tears running down our cheeks. Of course, the Vietnamese found it during a strip search, took Mike to the torture cell and beat him unmercifully. Sometime after midnight they pushed him into our cell, so bad off that even his voice was gone. But when he recovered in a couple weeks he immediately started looking for another piece of cloth."

We impoverish ourselves by shunting these heroes and their experiences to the back pages of our national consciousness. Their stories are not just boys' adventure tales writ large. They are a kind of moral instruction. They remind of something we've heard many times before but is worth repeating on a wartime Memorial Day when we're uncertain about what we celebrate. We're the land of the free for one reason only: We're also the home of the brave.
Mr. Collier wrote the text for "Medal of Honor: Portraits of Valor Beyond the Call of Duty" (Workman, 2006).

Crafty_Dog

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Memorial Day is NOT on Sale
« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 09:43:33 AM »
Alexander's Essay – May 24, 2012
Memorial Day Is NOT on Sale
Millions of Patriots Have Already Paid the Full Price

"I am well aware of the toil and blood and treasure that it will cost to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States." --John Adams
 
Memorial Day provides a stark contrast between the best of our nation's Patriot sons and daughters versus the worst of our nation's civilian culture of consumption.

Amid the sparse, reverent observances of the sacrifices made by millions of American Patriots who paid the full price for Liberty, in keeping with their sacred oaths, we are inundated at every turn with the commercialization of Memorial Day by vendors who are too ignorant and/or selfish to honor this day in accordance with its purpose.

Indeed, Memorial Day has been sold out. And it's no wonder, as government schools no longer teach civics or any meaningful history, and courts have excluded God (officially) from the public square.

In his essay "The Contest In America," 19th-century libertarian philosopher John Stuart Mill wrote, "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things; the decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling which thinks nothing worth a war, is worse. A man who has nothing which he cares more about than he does about his personal safety is a miserable creature who has no chance at being free, unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

It is that "decayed and degraded state of moral and patriotic feeling" which accounts for why so many "miserable creatures" have downgraded Memorial Day to nothing more than a date to exploit for commercial greed and avarice. While units large and small of America's Armed Forces stand in harm's way around the globe, many Americans are too preoccupied with beer, barbecue and baseball to pause and recognize the priceless burden borne by generations of our uniformed Patriots. Likewise, many politicos will use Memorial Day as a soapbox to feign Patriotism, while in reality they are in constant violation of their oaths to our Constitution.
 
That notwithstanding, there are still tens of millions of American Patriots who will set aside the last Monday in May to honor all those fallen Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen, Marines and Coastguardsmen who have refreshed the Tree of Liberty with their blood, indeed with their lives, so that we might remain the proud and free. My family, which humbly descends from generations of American Patriots from the American Revolution forward, will honor the service and sacrifice of our nation's fallen warriors by offering prayer in thanksgiving for the legacy of Liberty they have bequeathed to us, and by participating in respectful commemorations.

Since the opening salvos of the American Revolution, nearly 1.2 million American Patriots have died in defense of Liberty. Additionally, 1.4 million have been wounded in combat, and tens of millions more have served honorably, surviving without physical wounds. These numbers, of course, offer no reckoning of the inestimable value of their service or the sacrifices borne by their families, but we do know that the value of Liberty extended to their posterity -- to us -- is priceless.

Who were these brave souls?

On 12 May 1962, Gen. Douglas MacArthur addressed the cadets at the U.S. Military Academy, delivering his farewell speech, "Duty, Honor and Country." He described the legions of uniformed American Patriots as follows: "Their story is known to all of you. It is the story of the American man at arms. My estimate of him was formed on the battlefields many, many years ago and has never changed. I regarded him then, as I regard him now, as one of the world's noblest figures -- not only as one of the finest military characters, but also as one of the most stainless."
 
"His name and fame are the birthright of every American citizen. In his youth and strength, his love and loyalty, he gave all that mortality can give. He needs no eulogy from me, or from any other man. He has written his own history and written it in red on his enemy's breast.

"But when I think of his patience under adversity, of his courage under fire, and of his modesty in victory, I am filled with an emotion of admiration I cannot put into words. He belongs to history as furnishing one of the greatest examples of successful patriotism. He belongs to posterity as the instructor of future generations in the principles of liberty and freedom. He belongs to the present, to us, by his virtues and by his achievements.

"In twenty campaigns, on a hundred battlefields, around a thousand campfires, I have witnessed that enduring fortitude, that patriotic self-abnegation, and that invincible determination which have carved his statue in the hearts of his people.  From one end of the world to the other, he has drained deep the chalice of courage. As I listened to those songs of the glee club, in memory's eye I could see those staggering columns of the First World War, bending under soggy packs on many a weary march, from dripping dusk to drizzling dawn, slogging ankle deep through mire of shell-pocked roads; to form grimly for the attack, blue-lipped, covered with sludge and mud, chilled by the wind and rain, driving home to their objective, and for many, to the judgment seat of God.

"I do not know the dignity of their birth, but I do know the glory of their death. They died unquestioning, uncomplaining, with faith in their hearts, and on their lips the hope that we would go on to victory. Always for them: Duty, Honor, Country. Always their blood, and sweat, and tears, as they saw the way and the light."

Duty. Honor. Country -- these are not for bargain sale or discount.

Crafty_Dog

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Reagan, 1982 Memorial Day; Jefferson
« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2012, 09:47:59 AM »
second post of day:

On Memorial Day of 1982, President Ronald Reagan offered these words in honor of Patriots interred at Arlington National Cemetery: "I have no illusions about what little I can add now to the silent testimony of those who gave their lives willingly for their country. Words are even more feeble on this Memorial Day, for the sight before us is that of a strong and good nation that stands in silence and remembers those who were loved and who, in return, loved their countrymen enough to die for them. Yet, we must try to honor them not for their sakes alone, but for our own. And if words cannot repay the debt we owe these men, surely with our actions we must strive to keep faith with them and with the vision that led them to battle and to final sacrifice."
 
"Our first obligation to them and ourselves is plain enough: The United States and the freedom for which it stands, the freedom for which they died, must endure and prosper. Their lives remind us that freedom is not bought cheaply. It has a cost; it imposes a burden. And just as they whom we commemorate were willing to sacrifice, so too must we -- in a less final, less heroic way -- be willing to give of ourselves.

"It is this, beyond the controversy and the congressional debate, beyond the blizzard of budget numbers and the complexity of modern weapons systems, that motivates us in our search for security and peace. ... The willingness of some to give their lives so that others might live never fails to evoke in us a sense of wonder and mystery.

"One gets that feeling here on this hallowed ground, and I have known that same poignant feeling as I looked out across the rows of white crosses and Stars of David in Europe, in the Philippines, and the military cemeteries here in our own land. Each one marks the resting place of an American hero and, in my lifetime, the heroes of World War I, the Doughboys, the GIs of World War II or Korea or Vietnam. They span several generations of young Americans, all different and yet all alike, like the markers above their resting places, all alike in a truly meaningful way.

"As we honor their memory today, let us pledge that their lives, their sacrifices, their valor shall be justified and remembered for as long as God gives life to this nation. ... I can't claim to know the words of all the national anthems in the world, but I don't know of any other that ends with a question and a challenge as ours does: "O! say does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave, O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave?" That is what we must all ask."
============
Thomas Jefferson offered this enduring advice to all generations of Patriots: "Honor, justice, and humanity, forbid us tamely to surrender that freedom which we received from our gallant ancestors, and which our innocent posterity have a right to receive from us. We cannot endure the infamy and guilt of resigning succeeding generations to that wretchedness which inevitably awaits them if we basely entail hereditary bondage on them."
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 09:52:05 AM by Crafty_Dog »

bigdog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2012, 05:35:16 AM »
Every year, I love the front page of the website around Memorial Day.  That is such a powerful picture.  Thank you for the reminder, Guro. 

A short article on the history of Memorial Day: http://www.usmemorialday.org/backgrnd.html

Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Why they serve
« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2012, 06:15:15 AM »
Tom Manion: Why They Serve—'If Not Me, Then Who?'
After more than a decade of war, remarkable men and women are still stepping forward..Article Comments (57) more in Opinion | Find New $LINKTEXTFIND$ ».Email Print Save ↓ More .
.smaller Larger  By TOM MANION
I served in the military for 30 years. But it was impossible to fully understand the sacrifices of our troops and their families until April 29, 2007, the day my son, First Lt. Travis Manion, was killed in Iraq.

Travis was just 26 years old when an enemy sniper's bullet pierced his heart after he had just helped save two wounded comrades. Even though our family knew the risks of Travis fighting on the violent streets of Fallujah, being notified of his death on a warm Sunday afternoon in Doylestown, Pa., was the worst moment of our lives.

While my son's life was relatively short, I spend every day marveling at his courage and wisdom. Before his second and final combat deployment, Travis said he wanted to go back to Iraq in order to spare a less-experienced Marine from going in his place. His words—"If not me, then who . . . "—continue to inspire me.

My son is one of thousands to die in combat since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Because of their sacrifices, as well as the heroism of previous generations, Memorial Day 2012 should have tremendous importance to our entire nation, with an impact stretching far beyond one day on the calendar.

In Afghanistan, tens of thousands of American troops continue to sweat, fight and bleed. In April alone, 35 U.S. troops were killed there, including Army Capt. Nick Rozanski, 36, who made the difficult decision to leave his wife and children to serve our country overseas.

"My brother didn't necessarily have to go to Afghanistan," Spc. Alex Rozanski, Nick's younger brother and fellow Ohio National Guard soldier, said. "He chose to because he felt an obligation."

Sgt. Devin Snyder "loved being a girly-girl, wearing her heels and carrying her purses," according to her mother, Dineen Snyder. But Sgt. Snyder, 20, also took it upon herself to put on an Army uniform and serve in the mountains of northeastern Afghanistan as a military police officer. She was killed by an enemy roadside bomb, alongside three fellow soldiers and a civilian contractor, on June 4, 2011.

Air Force Tech. Sgt. Daniel Douville was an explosive ordnance disposal technician, doing an incredibly dangerous job depicted in "The Hurt Locker." He was a loving husband and father of three children. "He was my best friend," his wife, LaShana Douville, said. "He was a good person."

Enlarge Image

CloseGetty Images
 
A U.S. Marine in Kajaki, Afghanistan
.Douville, 33, was killed in a June 26, 2011, explosion in Afghanistan's Helmand province, where some of the fiercest fighting of the decade-long conflict continues to this day.

When my son died in Iraq, his U.S. Naval Academy roommate, Brendan Looney, was in the middle of BUD/S (basic underwater demolition) training to become a Navy SEAL. Devastated by his good friend's death, Brendan called us in anguish, telling my wife and me that losing Travis was too much for him to handle during the grueling training regimen.

Lt. Brendan Looney overcame his grief to become "Honor Man" of his SEAL class, and he served in Iraq before later deploying to Afghanistan. On Sept. 21, 2010, after completing 58 combat missions, Brendan died with eight fellow warriors when their helicopter crashed in Zabul province. He was 29. Brendan and Travis now rest side-by-side in Section 60 of Arlington National Cemetery.

"The friendship between First Lt. Travis Manion and Lt. Brendan Looney reflects the meaning of Memorial Day: brotherhood, sacrifice, love of country," President Obama said at Arlington on Memorial Day 2011. "And it is my fervent prayer that we may honor the memory of the fallen by living out those ideals every day of our lives, in the military and beyond."

But the essence of our country, which makes me even prouder than the president's speech, is the way our nation's military families continue to serve. Even after more than a decade of war, these remarkable men and women are still stepping forward.

As the father of a fallen Marine, I hope Americans will treat this Memorial Day as more than a time for pools to open, for barbecues or for a holiday from work. It should be a solemn day to remember heroes who made the ultimate sacrifice, and also a stark reminder that our country is still at war.

For the Rozanskis, Snyders, Douvilles, Looneys and thousands more like us, every day is Memorial Day. If the rest of the nation joins us to renew the spirit of patriotism, service and sacrifice, perhaps America can reunite, on this day of reverence, around the men and women who risk their lives to defend it.

Col. Manion, USMCR (Ret.), is on the board of the Travis Manion Foundation, which assists veterans and the families of the fallen.

G M

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Taking Chance
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2013, 09:13:20 AM »
http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/nationworld/chi-050123strobl,0,738425,full.story


By Lt. Col. Michael R. Strobl U.S. Marine Corps


 Chance Phelps was wearing his Saint Christopher medal when he was killed on Good Friday. Eight days later, I handed the medallion to his mother. I didn't know Chance before he died. Today, I miss him.
 
Over a year ago, I volunteered to escort the remains of Marines killed in Iraq should the need arise. The military provides a uniformed escort for all casualties to ensure they are delivered safely to the next of kin and are treated with dignity and respect along the way.

Read it all. The movie is very good as well.

bigdog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2013, 11:40:31 AM »
A beautiful, moving tribute, GM. Thank you for sharing it.

bigdog

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From the Jackson List
« Reply #7 on: May 23, 2014, 12:04:39 PM »
In the United States in 1909, the Memorial Day national holiday, also known as Decoration Day, fell on Monday, May 31st.

The President of the United States, William Howard Taft, delivered an address on the battlefield at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

In New York City, over 100,000 people lined Riverside Drive, cheered 15,000 parading veterans of the Civil War and the Spanish War, and attended exercises at the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument.  The Governor of New York, Charles Evans Hughes, delivered an address at Grant’s Tomb.  Governor Hughes earlier had reviewed a large parade in Brooklyn.  The Bronx also hosted comparable exercises—its largest parade ever.
 
Memorial Day commemorations involving smaller crowds and less prominent speakers also occurred in cities and towns across the United States.

In the village of Frewsburg in southwestern New York State, Memorial Day exercises began with a parade.  A column of people marched from Main Street to a wooden structure, Frewsburg’s Union Free School.  With seven classrooms and a library, the Union School offered an elementary course.  It also offered, as it had since 1896, a high school course.  The high school met in a large room on the top floor.  The School’s total enrollment was about 200 students.  The high school senior class numbered less than 20.
 
On that Memorial Day in Frewsburg, Union School pupils and teachers joined the parade.  It wound from the village to its cemetery, where a program was held.  Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and an honor roll of soldiers were read to the crowd.
 
A leading attorney, Walter Henry Edson of nearby Falconer, New York, delivered the principal speech.  Edson spoke about the Civil War, and about peace movements.  He emphasized that universal peace cannot occur until there is universal justice.
 
Robert Houghwout Jackson, then age 17, was one of the student marchers and listeners.  A few weeks later, he graduated as Frewsburg High School’s valedictorian.  Four years later, he became Edson’s colleague at the bar.  They later became law practice partners.

In time, including on the Memorial Day in 1946 that Justice Robert H. Jackson spent in Europe as chief U.S. prosecutor of Nazi war criminals, he made his contributions to universal justice and, he hoped, to peace.

Today, Justice Jackson’s remains rest in that same Frewsburg cemetery, the Maple Grove Cemetery.

It currently is adorned with many United States flags honoring men and women who died while serving in U.S. armed forces, and also honoring U.S. military veterans.



G M

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Taking Chance
« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2014, 01:18:25 PM »
http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FUfpWf45faU

[youtube]http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=FUfpWf45faU[/youtube]
« Last Edit: May 25, 2014, 01:21:16 PM by G M »

prentice crawford

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #10 on: May 26, 2014, 12:30:37 PM »
Remember the fallen.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JKqT0-3JV5E&feature=youtube_gdata_player

                        P.C.

Crafty_Dog

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The Fallen 9000
« Reply #11 on: May 29, 2014, 04:41:28 AM »

Crafty_Dog

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Crafty_Dog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2015, 03:40:17 PM »
 BUFFALO SOLDIERS

On September 21, 1866, U.S. Congress authorized the formation of several black regiments at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas under the command of Col. Benjamin H. Grierson.

Their nickname was given to the "Negro Cavalry" by the Native American tribes they fought; the term eventually became synonymous with all of the African-American regiments formed in 1866: 9th Cavalry Regiment, 10th Cavalry Regiment, 24th Infantry Regiment and 25th Infantry Regiment.

From 1866 to the early 1890s, these regiments served at a variety of posts in the Southwestern United States. They participated in most of the military campaigns in these areas and earned a distinguished record. Thirteen enlisted men and six officers from these four regiments earned the Medal of Honor during the Indian Wars.

1898–1918 Buffalo Soldiers participated in the Spanish American War after most of the Indian Wars ended in the 1890s, the regiments continued to serve and participated in the 1898 Spanish–American War in Cuba, where five more Medals of Honor were earned.

The regiments took part in the Philippine–American War from 1899 to 1903 and the 1916 Mexican Expedition.

In 1918 the 10th Cavalry fought at the Battle of Ambos Nogales during the First World War, where they assisted in forcing the surrender of the federal Mexican and Mexican militia forces.

Buffalo Soldiers fought in the last engagement of the Indian Wars; the small Battle of Bear Valley in southern Arizona which occurred in 1918 between U.S. cavalry and Yaqui natives.

The "Buffalo Soldiers" were established by Congress as the first peacetime all-black regiments in the regular U.S. Army.

On July 25, 1992, the Buffalo Soldier Monument was dedicated by General Colin L. Powell, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who was the first African-American to serve in that capacity. "The powerful purpose of this monument is to motivate us. To motivate us to keep struggling until all Americans have an equal seat at our national table, until all Americans enjoy every opportunity to excel, every chance to achieve their dream" Colin Powell

The park is located at 290 Stimson Avenue.



G M

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six seconds
« Reply #16 on: May 26, 2015, 01:13:13 AM »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #17 on: May 30, 2016, 06:55:21 AM »
 I ran across one last night that resonates with me:

"Honor the fallen by living a Life worthy of their sacrifice."

G M

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Opening to "Saving Private Ryan"
« Reply #18 on: May 30, 2016, 07:14:05 AM »
I ran across one last night that resonates with me:

"Honor the fallen by living a Life worthy of their sacrifice."

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=0HUf68gFGEE

« Last Edit: May 30, 2016, 08:52:37 AM by Crafty_Dog »

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #19 on: May 28, 2017, 12:18:47 PM »
Currently up at www.dogbrothers.com

=================================

Also:

 October 1944.
US Army/Air Force Base Spinazzola, Italy. “Dear Son,

I hoped I would never write this to you. In a little less than an hour, ill be strapping myself into my old plane and pointing her nose westward. I’ve seen the orders, I think it will be for the last time.

And so suddenly I find my life stripped away, like the branches of an old black tree. All that matters, is I write this to you. I know you won’t remember me, not really. I spent 3 days with you last year, when you were 6 months old, and though you can’t yet understand it, I… loved you more then, than you might imagine loving anyone right now.

Now listen to me, this uh… life. Know, that it is precious. You’ve gotta grasp at every little whiff of it that passes by you. It won’t be easy. It won’t be certain, not now, not in your unimaginable future. Don’t be surprised, no, embrace the stiff winds, and the lonely heights. Remember your name… never turn away from the right course because it’s hard. Above all, love. Scrape out the bottom of your soul, and love for all you’re worth. And when you find her, risk everything, die a thousand deaths to get her, don’t look back.

When you grow older (older than I will ever be) blow on those embers of that first heroic choice. You’ll be warmed…sustained.

If some day you have a son, remember he’s your greatest gift. Tell him these things. Make a man of him. Love him. Don’t live to get money, have a few things, but make them good things. Take care of them, learn how they work. There’s beauty in the smell of good machines and old leather. When you walk…alone, in autumn, down roads at night, trees tossing in the sunset, know that I would give everything to walk with you, & tell you their names. But I am there, in the light through the branches and I’m loving you where I see you.

I must go now, all my love…forever ever,

Dad.”

G M

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Crafty_Dog

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George Friedman: The Meaning of Memorial Day
« Reply #21 on: May 28, 2021, 07:26:18 PM »
   
The Meaning of Memorial Day
By: George Friedman
Editor's note: Ahead of Memorial Day this Monday, we are republishing this article, originally published on May 28, 2019.

I’m writing this on Memorial Day, a day dedicated to remembering those who died fighting for the United States and to enjoying the first outdoor gatherings of the summer. For some, marking the day by enjoying the pleasures of a barbecue seems a betrayal of the dead. For me, it is a celebration of life. The dead put themselves in harm’s way, some out of choice and some out of obligation. The deaths of the latter are no less noble for that. The deaths of the former no less tragic. Having a party and giving the meaning of the occasion little thought is not, in my view, a betrayal of the dead but the acceptance of their gift.

War is not far from my family. My son was in the Air Force, and our daughter and her husband were in the Army. The latter both served multiple tours in Iraq, and my son helped design the tools of war. The service of all three caused us anxiety, but we were especially uneasy about our daughter. I had encouraged her to choose the route that ultimately led her to serve with the First Cavalry in Iraq. Men have gone off to war for millennia, but seeing your daughter place her body in harm’s way is particularly agonizing. I understand that it is impolite to imply that women are different from men, but it is undeniable that fathers view their daughters differently than they view their sons. We are enormously proud of her, yet we are challenging the history of human practice in sending women to war. My generation brought forth this change, and it is the generation the least at peace with what we wrought.

War has changed in another way. When people of my generation went to war, they had no contact with home, save for a handful of hastily written letters. During our daughter’s deployments, my wife and I would be lying in bed when our phones came alive with texts, emails and pictures, particularly of Persian rugs being sold by itinerant Turks at enormous discounts. My wife supported the war effort by buying rugs that our daughter shipped home in between missions. (Our home is still immersed in them.) The contact between those who went to war and those who stayed behind was an indication to me that the face of war was changing. War was no longer reserved to a land far from home; it was merely a text away. My generation could not text home, nor do much more than imagine the home whose desolation we were told we were protecting. But having more contact did not make things easier for anyone. It created a dynamic between mother and child that Homer never imagined – and he imagined a lot.

All three returned from their duty, with scars on their souls. They were the kind of scars that come from linking your life to the dead and wounded. For the rest of us, today is meant to be a day of remembrance. But it is hard for those who have not gone to war or whose family members did not serve to be sobered by it. Inevitably, it has become one of America’s cherished three-day holiday weekends.

Some would say that the parties and barbecues are a betrayal of the obligation to remember. I don’t agree with that. Every warrior’s purpose is to protect the homeland from the harsh truths of war. Having done so, it should not surprise that people celebrate Memorial Day with parties and barbecues. The Republic was founded on a deep tension. It was dedicated to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, but it also emerged from a revolution that was the bloodiest war in American history, resulting in the deaths of about 5 percent of all white males.

Some argue that the happiness that they fought for does not refer to our shallow hedonism but rather to a well-ordered life. That may be true, but in believing in liberty, they left it to all of us to determine what a well-ordered life is. Even Benjamin Franklin and George Washington had different interpretations of a well-ordered life. Franklin apparently partied heartily in Paris when he represented the American rebels there and did not deny himself pleasure during the winter of Valley Forge. War and happiness compete, but they also complement each other. We will have a barbecue today, and I will make a toast to those who didn’t make it. Our forgetfulness may seem to be ingratitude, but it’s actually a celebration of what could not have been without war. My parents would not have survived had World War II lasted another six months. I would not have been born without the Allies’ victory at Normandy – a victory whose 75th anniversary is one week away. But our memories are limited; how many of us mourn the dead at Gettysburg? We pay tribute to them not by recalling memories of war but by living the fruits of victory.

The tension and connection between war and happiness is complex. Putting your life at risk and being far from everything that is yours is not a happy time. It may inspire some nostalgia, but there is little in war beyond drudgery and fear. Still, mortal enemies become friends, as nations and as people, and life goes on. This is not a defense of war. War needs no defense. But opposing war is like opposing bad weather. It is not amenable to our wishes. So, we live with it, and we live after it.

This weekend, our daughter and her husband are having a Memorial Day party. It will consist of multiple televisions playing old war movies and friends and neighbors coming and going. At first, I thought this idea was demented. I later realized it was perfect. They were combining fun with remembrance. On the surface, there will be drunken frivolity. Underneath, there will be the endless recollection of those who died, and the soldier’s constant regret of not having saved them.

For the warriors and their families, Memorial Day is a day of reflection. For the rest, it is a day of forgetting what happened and giving thanks unwittingly by living happily. This is not a betrayal. This is the way all countries that experience war, which includes every country in the world, survive. The true weight of the memory of the dead would be too much for us to bear.

If you are asking what this has to do with geopolitics, it has everything to do with it. Geopolitics is about the relationship between nations, and war is a common currency in those relations. Memorial Day is about the relationship between the warrior and his or her nation and family, and the relationship between the past and the future, mediated through war and its remembrance. It is the essence of geopolitics.


G M

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G M

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It's for the dead homies...
« Reply #24 on: June 02, 2021, 11:30:35 AM »


ccp

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yes
turning the mike off was rude

the story was actually quite interesting

veterans black white former slaves  bringing flowers to the graves of fallen Civil War soldiers with a parade
on 5/1/1865. must be the earliest recorded report of this .   8-)

not aware of it being done pre Civil War.



Crafty_Dog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #28 on: June 04, 2021, 01:33:02 PM »
More than rude, I would also add that I can imagine it being extremely disheartening to those, especially black people, who want to believe in America as a content of character place-- such a unifying message unheard because of prejudice.


ccp

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #29 on: June 04, 2021, 03:25:22 PM »
agree and of course ,
CNN already all over this playing up the race card for every thing they can soak this for
which appears to be Don Lemon's mission in life

not clear if person who lowered the mike has been outed
and had his or her life ruined yet for the insulting stupidity
   

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Crafty_Dog

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Re: Memorial Day
« Reply #32 on: June 07, 2021, 09:57:47 AM »
Apparently President Magoo failed to mention D-Day on June 6.  However he did remember the Tulsa Race Riots.