Memorial Day 2015


Memorial Day is supposed to be a day of remembrance of our many fellow Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country, and for each of us.

But for too many of us beneficiaries of that sacrifice, Memorial Day is just a three-day weekend – the start of summer, an excuse to eat the extra hot dog or hamburger and to drink the extra beer. Memorial Day ends up being all about us, our families and our friends.

That’s wrong, but here’s a simple and easy way to make it right.

The traditional Park Ridge Memorial Day parade steps off this morning from South Park at 10:00 a.m. and ends at City Hall. Show up along the parade route. Applaud the veterans who will be marching in place of those whom we honor.

But don’t let it end there.

Following the parade there will be a short memorial service at the monument in Hodge’s Park. Spend a little extra time to attend that service.

Firing up the grille, or pouring that first Bloody Mary, can wait another half-hour.

But if that just doesn’t fit in the schedule, how about swinging by one of our many cemeteries and stopping by the grave of just one fallen soldier. They aren’t hard to find: all veterans’ graves should be marked with a fresh American flag, and you can pretty much tell by the date of death whether or not the soldier fell while in the service.

We can do that, and we should do that.  Because we are free men and women.

And those honored dead helped keep us that way.

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2 comments so far

Thank you, Counselor. One of your best ever.

PW, was that you at Hodge’s Park in the blue poncho with the black ‘Hawks cap? If so, you walked the walk, dude, and that’s righteous! But what was Maloney doing talking about the veterans as if this were Veterans’ Day instead of Memorial Day? Doesn’t he get that today is about the dead vets, not the live ones?

EDITOR’S NOTE: Yes, it was.

Acting Mayor Maloney may have been under the same misimpression the moderator of the Hodges Park event was, one that the chaplain corrected when he gave the invocation: Memorial Day is a remembrance of the dead, Veterans’ Day is a thank-you to the living.

Give him a break, he’s only been on the job a couple of months.

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