This weekend we honor and remember those who gave their lives in service to our nation. Memorial Day began just after the Civil War when families decorated the graves of soldiers from both sides of the conflict. About 620,000 soldiers died while serving during the Civil War. The population of the United States was about one tenth of what it is today. Thus, in terms of today’s population, that is the equivalent of more than six million deaths.
About ten years ago, Gold Star mother Diane Layfield explained to me why, year after year, she would painfully recount the story of her son’s valiant sacrifice. She told me about an old saying. “Warriors die twice. Once on the battlefield and once again when they are finally forgotten.” As we anticipate a joyous summer, let us pause to remember our blessings especially those borne by the ultimate sacrifice of our service members.
Lance Corporal Travis Layfield was killed on April 6, 2004 while serving with the United States Marine Corps in Iraq.
- Douglas Miller, Central Committee Member, AD16