Do you know why we observe Memorial Day in the United States? I wasn’t sure anymore…it seems to be about an extra day off of work, the start of summer and something American and the military. When I don’t know something I research. And I found that the holiday is so much more than backyard cookouts and I am embarrassed that I forgot the significance.
The first Memorial Day was observed on May 30, 1868. As a day to observe fallen soldiers – those who died in our nation’s service. It included a focus on decorating the graves of those soldiers. In 1970 a bill was passed to move the date to the last Monday in May (to make it a 3 day weekend for Federal holidays). Now there are some purists trying to get it moved back to the May 30th date permanently.
Okay – what does Memorial Day have to do in a blog about sales success? Not much. But as an American business owner who has freedom and liberties I enjoy because of many fallen soldiers, I believe we should all follow the National Moment of Rememberance. At 3 p.m. (your local time) stop what you are doing and reflect on those that have been willing to lay down their life for others. If you missed 3 p.m. on May 25th, take that moment now.
I also want to take the time to honor a couple of soldiers…In 2004, a leader I know had a knock at her family door. It was the military informing her husband that his son (her stepson), Cpl Richard Warner, a U.S. Marine, had been killed in Iraq. In 1944, my Aunt had the same knock to find my great uncle Bruno Oribiletti had lost his life in World War II.
To the future, my nephew, Nicholas Noel, enlisted in the US Air Force. He heads off to basic training in August. He is willing to fight for all of us to make the world a safe place. I pray that he be safe and am proud that he considers the rest of worthy of his time and possibly his life.
It hits home…whether you agree with war or not…people sacrifice for others, families are changed forever, and they deserve all of us to remember what Memorial Day is about.
Take that moment to remember this afternoon. They all deserve it.