We are again in that annual transition from spring into summer. We can finally put Old Man Winter and the pandemic behind us. To the young men and women that have fought through these challenging times, congratulations for accomplishing the important milestone of high school graduation.
As these individuals enter adulthood, they represent our nation’s most valuable resource. We wish them well as they embark on the next exciting chapter of their lives. To their parents, extended family, and teachers, thank you for a job well done. Raising children into adulthood is no small task. Providing productive members of our community remains the foundation of civilization and a free nation.
The end of May also brings us to Memorial Day. Unlike a year ago when the pandemic precluded large events commemorating this important day, this spring communities can again gather publicly to honor those that sacrificed for our nation on the field of combat.
Since our nation’s inception, the Armed Forces of United States have answered the call to duty. Beginning with the Revolutionary War, without hesitation, our nation’s patriots have stepped forward to ensure our nation has endured. They have stood strong in the face of adversity. They have paid a huge price, suffering over 2.8 million casualties, almost 1.5 million killed and still today over 40,000 service members remain missing or unaccounted for.
To those of us that have worn the uniform, it remains a special responsibility and solemn duty to hold true to the ideals that our fallen brothers and sisters sacrificed their lives for. We the living must never forget those that paid the ultimate price in the struggle to protect this nation.
As we observe Memorial Day, please pause for a few moments and ponder the words an unknown author as they observed our national symbol, the Flag of the United States: "Our flag does not fly because the wind moves it, it flies with the last breath of each soldier who died protecting it."
As we mark this important day, let’s put aside differences and honor the many that sacrificed that we may still enjoy freedom today.