Posts filed under ‘war and peace’

HAPPY HAPPY 95th Birthday Mum!!!

Update : a few flowers :)
flowers 95

Nanaresbo Nine and a half decades- what a great deal of life – my mother- truly a living history. Her 90th was to be celebrated by us all but life, the stem cell transplants and the resulting loss of Chris negated that celebration of life lived well.
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/02/11/happy-90th-birthday-mum/
And now 5 years later another milestone.

nanaandchris1

The loss of her only grandson

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2009/12/19/goodbye-my-luvleyful-grandson-chris-ritchey/
was as she said the worst part of her life even losing just about every family member – brothers, sisters, mother, father, nieces and nephew could not compare. But through all these years my mum has kept her optimism, she forgives easily harms done to her and is a kind and gentle soul, never wishes ill of anyone.Her sense of family is to be envied!

What a remarkable story she has lived, the hundreds and hundreds of people all over the world that have been touched by knowing her , eaten her special cakes, pies and shared her home when they had none.

She says it is lonely getting to this age as all your peers ( bar one Uncle John who is 102)

Unclejohn100are no longer around to share the memories of youth, of weddings, births, war and peace. My mum still makes me smile, holds my hand when I am crippled with my own grief, makes a brilliant cup of tea and knows when a smile and a touch of compassion is needed.
She wrote memories of her life for her granddaughter when she was just a wee bairn and more when Christopher was born-

My Book

Cover Design Chris Ritchey

Cover Design Chris Ritchey

What indeed is the truth about any of us? A question most difficult to answer. The world will never know our innermost life and thoughts even if someone were to write and read one hundred biographies. The main facts of our lives are known and are likely only to be known to ourselves alone. Not only are there facts we do not tell but some that we ourselves do not know.

At best some small facet of the truth will catch the light and that I suppose, is what we must seize for there is much virtue in truth. Truth has almost a mystical power, like radium, it seems to give off its own energy and light that goes on forever

The memories of life, people and times of her years of “living history” there for the generations to come:

grandadbs

So where is the Beginning of it all? Upon reflection and trying to summon up the very first picture, there is a faint imprint there in my mind. Can a child of three really retain, retell the event so many years on? Could I really see six or seven human forms lying on a mattress of black and white ticking strung between wooden frames? The box like shapes, the harsh sound of human retching the pungent smell of oil and vomit that unpleasant fragrance still is in my nostrils.

Some photo of that time with its sights and smells must have embedded itself forever in my mind. I can feel still the roll and the steady beat of a noise below. I was huddled, warmed and comforted by another little body next to mine. I can see my mother lying stretched out a short distance away from us; her long dark hair was damp and lying untidily on the pillow. I knew somehow that she was ill too. My father was on his feet; I see his arms with dark shapes and lines on them holding a cup to my mouth. He was telling me “drink this, you will feel better” then oblivion and I remember no more.

Many years afterwards I made the discovery that my first recollection was that I was in a cabin of a troop ship traveling home to England. The ship was bringing soldiers and their families, who had been serving in southern Ireland where the troubles had broken out after the close of the Great War.

Then as she grew memories of childhood
Grandad kids

We used to walk or skip our way from Devonshire Road, it was quite a distance, and no bus passes in those days. If for any reason we were fortunate enough to ride on the little red single-decker bus Renee and I used to try to sit behind the Nuns from St. Vincent’s. St Vincent’s was a Catholic school further down the road. We were fascinated with their dark somber garments, topped with this huge white-starched headgear, domed in the middle with great wide bat like wings framing their faces. Bus tickets, bits of string, chewed up pieces of rubber, paper clips, anything that could be found in a child’s pockets found their way into the folds of these hats. I have a suspicion that these paragons of virtue from the convent used to know exactly what we were up to. They never ever chastised us or even by the slightest flicker of their eyes acquainted us with the knowledge that they knew what we were doing.

Love and War -

mumand dad

On that dreadful Sunday Sept 3rd, 1939 when war was declared and we heard at 11:00 a.m. the first air raid siren, the whole road seemed to appear at their doorways quivering with the unreality and fear of the unknown. We had been told at the exchange to report to the nearest exchange in the event of an air raid warning. I recall running all the way up Hendon Lane to Finchley thinking I was going to have to help out the war, only to be told I wasn’t required!

digging for victory

digging for victory

We were at war and ahead of us we knew not “what! The first few months were unbelievably quiet. We were waiting with uncertainty and a touch of excitement as well. Everyone was holding his or her breath, I volunteered for a situation, not knowing what it would mean. In a few days I found out. I was to go to the Ministry of Information, which was temporarily housed at Senate House, University of London, near Goodge St. We had triple forms to fill out, swearing us to secrecy, never to divulge or talk about anything we might hear there. We reported to an ordinary looking switchboard. but what a difference when the sirens were sounded . Three of us would be required to man the emergency switchboard, which was housed in the basement of the building; this was called the war room. A big square room, around the walls were telephone boxes which were connect with a direct line to all the important ministries for example, the Admiralty, War Office, Air Ministry, Foreign Office, Ministry of Supply etc. etc. In each telephone box sat a high-ranking official who would be in communication with his respective Ministry. The censors and press officials were they’re sorting and sifting through thousands of reports coming in from all areas of Britain and the world. These people were tremendous and treated the operators extremely well.

Lord Reith had taken on the job of Minister of Information; he had been head of the BBC. Winston Churchill, who was then 1st Lord of the Admiralty, used to come through on his direct line “ Good Morning, give me the Minister please” short polite and always to the point. The town clerks and mayors of today in local council could well take a lesson from those gentlemen of yesteryear. Sir Walter Monkton was there; he was a good friend of the Duke of Windsor who was in France at the time. The Duke would call quite frequently to have a chat with his friend. I enjoyed my work immensely it was extremely busy especially if any kind of action, naval air or army was taking place.

dadmejpg
A few years after the war along came me and her troubles ( according to some really started) As our lives unfolded moving to Canada – the friends an relatives grew- back to England and more and more people my mum gathered to her heart. Finally retirement and back across the pond to Lorain, Ohio. These years have seen some of her happiest and saddest.

Mumcollage
She has seen the abdication of a King, experienced the Blitz and the rebuild, the death of another King and the crowning of a Queen. Mum watched a wall go up and a wall come down- results of the atomic bomb, gone from only having a battery operated radio to having the first television on the street, private telephones, airplanes and jets, computers and Ipads – governments that come and go, countries whose names have changed, the rise and fall of Russia/ Soviet Union. More than one war

http://laughingsquid.com/the-most-important-events-of-the-last-100-years-in-10-minutes/

and she has kept true to herself and to her family through it all. My mother has written “birthday poems” for special birthdays for all her family- she doesn’t forget –

I wish I could do her justice – no poem -just a blog post wanting her to know how proud and thankful I am to have her as MY MUM!!!!nanaboysres

HAPPY BIRTHDAY – FROM THE IST , 2ND AND 3RD GENERATION OF THOSE THAT LOVE YOU!!!!! AND JUST SO YOU KNOW – GAVIN AND BRAEDYN DECIDED YOUR PRESENT – WE ARE ALL GOING TO MUSICAL DISNEY!!!!

slides_mickey

February 11, 2014 at 10:03 pm 14 comments

…AND LORAIN SAID- “NO” !!!!!…… Admiral King – Lorain Ohio

AKflagrtobias-1

As readers interested in Lorain’s Admiral Ernest J King will recall I have covered some of the highlights of his career. Charleston Village and Black River Historical Society and the City of Lorain paid him homage in 2011.

I must admit, I had to wonder when researching this man of importance, why it had taken so very long for his birthplace to recognize him as they were even doing away with the high school named after him? I suppose, coming from a country and culture which holds history and heroes of ” cherished importance”, it was a bit of a culture shock arriving in Lorain and seeing the throwaway society of history at its finest.

Even the new builds are only built with a life expectancy of 40 to 50 years. Thank heavens that wasn’t the case when they built my old house.

We are only all too aware of government not listening to citizens – until it is too late- but government not listening to their own experts such as Admiral King and the warning of Pearl Harbor – well what can one say?

https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2012/12/06/admiral-ernest-j-king-pearl-harbor-december-7th-the-warning/
But Admiral Ernest J King did not forget his birthplace and sent the signal mast of the USS Arizona home to Lorain.
uss_arizona

The battleship USS Arizona (BB 39) was sunk at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. The superstructure above the waterline was removed soon after the attack. Admiral Earnest H. King, Chief of Naval operations, sent the signal mast to his hometown of Lorain, Ohio. Commander Edwin C. Keyes, a close friend of Adm. King commanded that naval armory in Lorain. He had the mast modified and erected at the armory to be used for training purposes. The Navy added the yards (cross pieces). Allen Permach of Lorain Steel Fabricators, made the other modifications including the 36 ft. length added to the bottom of the Arizona’s original 26 ft. mast. The vertical shaft represents the 1177 crewmen who gave their lives on the “Day of Infamy.” The yard stands for all those who served aboard.

So what happened ? Where is the mast ? Was it used as part of the Admiral King Tribute space- this piece of United States history? This remaining part of what is probably the world’s most iconic war memorial the USS Arizona?
800px-P-Signal_Mast_of_the_USS_Arizona_1

NO! you see LORAIN REFUSED THE OFFER - so it was stored for 10 years

The Arizona’s modified signamast mast was used until the armory was razed in 1980. It was offered to the city of Lorain, but was refused. In order to save the mast from destruction, Cdr. Keyes obtained authorization from the Navy for Brenne H. Donofrio, a naval engineer to take possession of it. Nick A. Donofrio, the father of Brenne H. Donofrio was a close friend of Adm. King and Cdr. Keyes, and had been honored by the Secretary of State and the Secretary of the Navy for having donated several important inventions to the Navy during World War II. The mast
was moved to Brenne H. Donofrio’s property where it was stored for 10 years

Then what ? Even though there are a plethora of Veterans Groups who cherish the memories and valor of their compatriots with ceremonies and memorials this” icon of a day of infamy ” – how did this special symbol of bravery leave this place called Lorain this symbol of “remembrance and reverence” – It seems others recognized its worth but not Lorain.

plaque

Robert Manzetti, a retired railroad engineer from Ohio, learned of the mast while visiting his daughter who lived near Lorain. Mr. Manzetti and Dr. Earl L. Field, a professor at Arizona College of the Bible and both residents of Glendale, Arizona formed the U.S.S. Arizona Signal Mast Committee. The Committee purchased the mast, transported it to Arizona and erected it here in Wesley Bolin Plaza. It was dedicated and donated to the State of Arizona on December 7, 1990. All funds and work on the mast came from private donations.

AHHHHHHHHHH Lorain words fail me – vision does not mean ‘HINDSIGHT”!!!
City  of Lorain
There were two Mayors in the time frame of 1980 -

January, 1972 -January 1980 -Joseph J. Zahorec
January, 1980 -January 1984 -William Parker

and in 1990 when the mast left Lorain

January, 1985-January 1996- Alex M. Olejko

And one has to wonder where was Lorain’s favourite Veteran – Jack LaVriha- what were they thinking?
Jack

LaVriha had been president of the Lorain Memorial Association for over 5o years, sponsoring annual Lorain Memorial Day parades, annual Community Memorial Services at the Lorain Palace Civic Center, memorial outdoor services at four area cemeteries and the placing of American flags on the graves of veterans. He was past president of the Lorain Veteran�s Council, serving as its secretary for 22 years. He spearheaded the placing of granite monuments at Veterans Memorial Park and area cemeteries in memory of all Lorain men and women who died in all American wars.

You can find the information of the USS Arizona’s Mast here:
http://www.hmdb.org/marker.asp?marker=26610

Thanks to Lisa Miller - Lorain 365 for the link and initial information

December 10, 2012 at 3:23 pm 6 comments

Admiral Ernest J King- Pearl Harbor – December 7th- The warning!

Pearl Harbor poster

There will be much written about December 7th as the people of the United States remember ” a day which will live in infamy”.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infamy_Speech

It was because of the attack on Pearl Harbor Lorain’s Admiral Ernest J. King was recalled to Washington:

admiral king TIME

“On 30 December 1941 he became Commander-in-Chief, United States Fleet. On 18 March 1942, he was appointed Chief of Naval Operations, relieving Admiral Stark. He is the only person to hold this combined command”

In 1938 Admiral Ernest J King “warned” the government of the vulnerability of Pearl Harbor

“Among his accomplishments was to corroborate Admiral Harry E. Yarnell’s 1932 war game findings in 1938 by staging his own successful simulated naval air raid on Pearl Harbor, showing that the base was dangerously vulnerable to aerial attack, although he was taken no more seriously than his contemporary until Dec. 7, 1941 when the Imperial Japanese Navy attacked the base by air for real.

One has to wonder how if this son of Lorain had been listened to in 1938 if things would have been different and December 7th would not be in the history books as the “day of infamy”………

Lest we forget
AKflagrtobias-1

Admiral King Tribute Site- Lorain Ohio-

More On Lorain’s Admiral Ernest J King here:
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/05/23/fleet-admiral-ernest-j-king-remembering-you/

December 6, 2012 at 1:08 pm 1 comment

Dedication Ceremony- Eric Barnes – Heroes Walk-The coverage

Thanks to Joe Bock from Lorain City Schools Channel 20 who uploaded to You tube

Further update” More pictorial coverage from Mark Teleha

http://www.locophotogblog.com/?p=1483

UPDATE: further coverage on the LCS Channel 20 and from their face book page http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.405441606191922.93572.147298438672908&type=1

Photo Roger Brownson

The sun warmed the earth and air the young people of Lorain High School Marching Band and the Lorain High JROTC, the representatives from the United States Marine Corps, The United States Army, Unites States Air force, the United States Navy warmed hearts. It was a morning of tribute to the young by the young as they stood proudly honoring the young men who gave their lives- the ultimate sacrifice.

The coverage for the dedication can be found in the following links . The area media also has to have our heart-felt thanks, their coverage of the project as it progressed reached out and their readers sent in donations. Without such generosity the project would have been “less”.

This is phase one of the walkway more to come.


In the meantime please view the videos of the morning taken by Mark Teleha of Lorain County Photographers Blog
http://www.locophotogblog.com/?p=1435

Photos by Lisa Miller on the Lorain 365 Blog ( one of the Morning Journal Media Bloggers)also on her blog Busters House


http://bustershouse.wordpress.com/2012/11/13/scenes-from-eric-barnes-heroes-walk-dedication/

http://lorain365.wordpress.com/2012/11/11/veterans-day/

The thoughts and photos of Dan Brady- who designed the Commemorative Booklet – of Brady’s Bunch of Lorain County Nostalgia
http://danielebrady.blogspot.com/2012/11/eric-barnes-heroes-walk-dedication.html

Chronicle Telegram-

Heroes Walk memorial trail dedicated on Veterans Day filed by Evan Goodenow

“They share pain from a loss that will never go away and belong to a club that no one wants to be part of.”

http://chronicle.northcoastnow.com/2012/11/12/heroes-walk-memorial-trail-dedicated-on-veterans-day/

Morning Journal Photo Jason Henery
Heroes Walk: Pathway dedicated to fallen soldiers by Jason Henery

I’m going to donate my time to make it nice,” Torres said of the park. “I’m glad for my city to appreciate the sacrifice my son made.”

Photo Lisa Miller

As always click on photos to enlarge and thank you everyone who made this dedication memorable –

November 12, 2012 at 1:33 pm 13 comments

September the 11th- a reprise

TW NOTE: I wrote this for the 10th anniversary of 911- I have decided to reprise this year-

design by Chris Ritchey

10 years it is unbelievable to me a decade has passed – the sights and sounds of that day so vivid still- an act which will send the perpetrators to perdition.

Normally I would write an updated remembrance but I am in my own kind of man-made purgatory at the moment so I choose to remember as I did last year (below) . I also remember 9-11-09 …. the day of hope as Chris took his first infusion of SGN 35…… that September 11th dawning with hope just as years before a glorious September morn saw hope crashing to the earth…… the outcome was the same “grief and loss”………..a time to remember those that continue to give their lives ………………………….


Loose Change Poster – design by Chris Ritchey

‘Kind” -having or showing a tender and considerate and helpful nature

There was no “kindness” in the nature of that September day as terror flew into the everyday working lives of those who experienced the dreadful destruction of September 11th 2001

They say you remember where you were and what you were doing until you die certain events-

September 3rd- 1939

Dec. 7th – 1941

November 22-1963

And September 11th 2001.

ED NOTE:The linked video is from ordinary citizens with a view of the destruction- released 5 years after that September 11th day

I was sitting on the couch that morning, having my first cup of tea- my son- in -law to be called

“We are being attacked”

Knowing his penchant for practical jokes and phone calls I said

yeah yeah right- tell me more”

Just then my daughter came down the stairs with the phone in her hand , hair dripping wet –

Mum he is right a plane just flew into a building in New York – turn on the television.

Another call beeped in it was my mum

“Oh there has been a terrible accident a plane has flown into a skyscraper”

Just as she said that Tony ( my cousin who was over for a trip ) is heard in the back ground

“Bloody Hell there is another one.”

We all went silent, incredulous watching as devastation rained down from the sky on a beautiful September morning.

I called my son- he told me that they were being evacuated from the college and told to return home- there was something going on in Cleveland , as he was heading to his campus apartment there were agents and militia armed with weapons in and around the streets- it was very tense. They were told to stay inside.

That day had a profound effect on this nation – I remember for the next two mornings- as I watered the garden not a sound from the sky , no roaring of the high-speed boats out on the lake- traffic was almost non existent- the sound of a siren sent chills- flags appeared outside the houses and on the streets – as if a patriotic garden bloomed from the carnage.

We did not move from the television- we watched as if from another planet the “human” story unfold that day. We hardly knew how to express our thoughts -the ugliness of hatred brought home -engulfing and billowing out as the towers and civilization fell in the name of “Jihad”.

As for those that carried out these attacks there are no adequate words of condemnation. Their barbarism will stand as their shame for all eternity.
–British Prime Minister Tony Blair

My son used his talents , he did a series of posters – that I have yet to find since his passing. It was after that day my son wore his patriotism proudly – always one to fly the flag ( more on that at the closure of this blog) he defended her the way he knew best through his work.

Yes , I am remembering Septembers and they are tinged with pride , lack of understanding , helplessness and prejudice against those that cause pain to the human heart and condition ………

and all who weep including the willow WE REMEMBER SEPT 11TH IN OUR OWN WAY!
Source needed

September 11, 2012 at 11:10 am 3 comments

Angels came down- Kevin Costner- alone on a battlefield

Thought I would share this …. battlefields and young men who have died on them are on my mind this morning – for a couple of reasons….

Angels Came Down -2011 KEVIN COSTNER & MODERN WEST

Walking all alone in the Southern rain
By graveyards and battlefields that blood still stains
Back to a time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

In the forests and the fields so many men were killed
I can hear their cries still echo through these hills
That was the time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

The angels came down to the fallen men
They held their hands and they prayed for them
They carried their souls beyond the moon and the sun
All the way to heaven one by one

The angels worked so hard for so many years
To heaven and back again they shed so many tears
They left no one and they placed no blame
Walking all alone in the Southern rain

The angels came down to the fallen men
They held their hands and they prayed for them
They carried their souls beyond the moon and the sun
All the way to heaven one by one

Walking all alone in the Southern rain
Never heal the troubles never heal the pain
But that was the time when the angels came
Walking all alone in the Southern Rain

April 14, 2012 at 2:25 pm 8 comments

In Flanders Field – reprise 11-11-11-11

The 11th hour, the 11th day , the 11th month, the 11th year ……..

November 11, 2011 at 12:24 pm 2 comments

Fleet Admiral King – the round-up coverage- Charleston Village- Lorain

photo Paula Tobias


We are so lucky in this community to have people who care and respect and cover the events in this oldest neighborhood. Maybe it is because those who lived here gave so much in their time – from a young man who gave everything in Iraq Airman 1st Class Eric Barnes to an Admiral of the Fleet – Ernest J. King and all those heroes of the ages in between.


Eric Barnes Design Chris Ritchey

We may have some homes that need tender loving care and we aren’t the most upmarket neighborhood BUT we also have the “right stuff”

Coverage of the Admiral King Tribute :
Morning Journal ( with videos)

http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2011/09/17/news/mj5036161.txt?viewmode=default

http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2011/09/19/news/mj5043383.txt

http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2011/09/18/opinion/mj5039940.txt

http://www.morningjournal.com/articles/2011/09/19/news/mj5043383.txt

Chronicle Telegram
( Link Missing to the preview article on September 10th-)

http://chronicle.northcoastnow.com/2011/09/19/lorain-honors-hometown-hero-park-school-dedicated-to-admiral-king/

Dan Brady, has a wealth of information on Admiral King on his blog – and was the designer of the commemorative booklet handed out.
http://danielebrady.blogspot.com/2011/09/admiral-ernest-j-king-weekend-wrap-up.html

Mark Teleha , my unofficial official photographer and chronicler of all things in this neighborhood since the days of WoM has photos and videos

http://www.locophotogblog.com/?p=668

Also photos of the events are still coming in – thanks to all that covered this event, Lorain City Schools ( Channel 20) Lisa Miller , Mary Springowski, Roger Brownson, Paula Tobias, TV Channels 5 and 8 and many more. I hope those that attended enjoyed their “journey to the neighborhood”

September 21, 2011 at 2:25 pm 5 comments

Fleet Admiral King – continued

Part One
https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2011/06/26/flag-raising-fleet-admiral-king/

Fleet Admiral King

Lisa, of Busters House would like to know if anyone has any information as to who was the artist- any ideas?????????
http://bustershouse.wordpress.com/2011/06/23/a-lorain-history-mystery/


A Night View

As with any project there are always hiccups. As most are aware there isn’t any electricity at the site so therefore we had to go solar in order to light the flag at night. We had to use a bucket truck and the Electrical Dept. to get the solar panel and light up to the cross arm of the flag pole. However, in the blustery winds the solar panel moved and was pointing the wrong way – a readjustment and tightening up had to be done. Now it turns out we have to adjust the light direction as it is hitting the bar.
The problem is we can only do the adjustments in the day time which makes “light direction” a bit difficult but there is a light on the flag and we will sort this out.

The weather also played havoc with pouring the concrete around the flag pole the week before the flag raising ceremony.Thanks to John Falbo and Terminal Ready- Mix Inc after a week of rain delays they have poured the ocean, lake, sky blue concrete around the base of the flag pole. Our gratitude goes without saying

It takes many, many hands, expertise and talent to get projects like this up and running. I also wanted to share some photos taken by another photographer last Saturday – following photos were taken by
ROGER BROWNSON and appear with his permission:

Preparing to raise the flags

THE BEGINNING- 113 HAMILTON AVE.- BIRTHPLACE OF FLEET ADMIRAL ERNEST J. KING

June 29, 2011 at 3:14 am 4 comments

The Memory of Memorial- Eric Barnes- The Valiant

Eric Barnes design by Chris Ritchey

I never had the honor of meeting Eric Barnes and neither did my son but we will always have a connection this young man and I .

When Eric Barnes was killed giving his young life , strength and love for his country, freedom and flag. Century Tel ( now Link) wished to pay homage and tribute to this young man of Lorain .

They did and in Settlers’ Watch an eagle soars
http://www.locophotogblog.com/?p=361 once more reminding us of not only the bravery of Eric but of all the young men that gave their very essence so a flag can fly, a child can laugh and a true word spoken without fear.

Eric Barnes ( design ) Christopher D. Ritchey

The very last design work my own son did was to commemorate the bravery of Airman First Class Eric Barnes. A few weeks after completing the design work for Eric’s tribute , Chris died, not laying his life down for his country BUT from the obscenity of cancer .

Who I Am by Chris Ritchey


Chris was extremely proud to do this for Eric and the Barnes family , he loved freedom and was as patriotic as they come. And the truth be known I find a sort of comfort knowing that Chris’ last work was honoring the bravery and selflessness of this young man who like so many others gave and are giving everything for their home. It is fitting I think that one who so admired America and her heroes was able to speak to those ideals in his final work.

Please remember as you enjoy your hot dogs, hamburgers ,apple pies, parades and get togethers those who fought and continue to fight for our freedoms, those that like Eric called Lorain their home as well as all who have given their all no matter their hometown- They are the Valiant …………..
Design by Chris Ritchey

The upcoming three-day weekend has prompted searches on Yahoo! for “when is memorial day,” “what is memorial day,” and “memorial day history.” The day was originally known as “Decoration Day” because the day was dedicated to the Civil War dead, when mourners would decorate gravesites as a remembrance.

The holiday was first widely observed on May 30, 1868, when 5,000 people helped decorate the gravesites of 20,000 Union and Confederate soldiers buried at Arlington National Cemetery. (Some parts of the South still remember members of the Confederate Army with Confederate Memorial Day.)

After World War I, the observances were widened to honor the fallen from all American wars–and in 1971, Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday.

Towns across the country now honor military personnel with services, parades, and fireworks. A national moment of remembrance takes place at 3 p.m. At Arlington National Cemetery, headstones are graced with small American flags.

This day is not to be confused with Veterans Day, which is observed on November 11 to honor military veterans, both alive and dead.


SOURCE
http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_upshot/20110526/us_yblog_upshot/the-meaning-of-memorial-day

May 29, 2011 at 9:54 am 1 comment

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