Tribute to Our Fallen Heroes

Written By: Sandy @Orangeone4
Follow us on Twitter @RedNationRising

On this Memorial Day,  Red Nation Rising pays tribute to all of our fallen heroes who lost their lives securing our liberty and freedoms.  

Although originally on May 30th, Congress changed Memorial Day to fall on the last Monday of May as part of the National Holiday Act of 1971.  

In its 2002 Memorial Day address, the VFW stated: “Changing the date merely to create three-day weekends has undermined the very meaning of the day. No doubt, this has contributed greatly to the general public’s nonchalant observance of Memorial Day.”  

We agree.  We’ve gathered the following history from the U.S. Memorial Day site.  

“Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation’s service.  There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day.  There is also evidence that organized women’s groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, “Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping” by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication “To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead” (Source: Duke University’s Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920).”

“While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it’s difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860’s tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in General Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868.  It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division.  It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.”

“Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery.  The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873.  By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states.”

“The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war).  It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 – 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis’ birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.”

“In 1915, inspired by the poem ‘In Flanders Fields’, Moina Michael replied with her own poem:

We cherish too, the Poppy red,

That grows on fields where valor led,

It seems to signal to the skies

That blood of heroes never dies.

She then conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial Day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war.  She was the first to wear one, and sold poppies to her friends and co-workers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need.  Later a Madam Guerin from France was visiting the United States and learned of this new custom started by Ms. Michael and when she returned to France, made artificial red poppies to raise money for war orphaned children and widowed women.  This tradition spread to other countries.  In 1921, the Franco-American Children’s League sold poppies nationally to benefit war orphans of France and Belgium.”

“The League disbanded a year later and Madam Guerin approached the VFW for help. Shortly before Memorial Day in 1922, the VFW became the first veterans’ organization to nationally sell poppies.  Two years later their “Buddy” Poppy program was selling artificial poppies made by disabled veterans.  In 1948 the US Post Office honored Ms. Michael for her role in founding the National Poppy movement by issuing a red 3-cent postage stamp with her likeness on it.”

“Traditional observance of Memorial Day has diminished over the years.  Many Americans nowadays have forgotten the meaning and traditions of Memorial Day.  At many cemeteries, the graves of the fallen are increasingly ignored, neglected. Most people no longer remember the proper flag etiquette for the day.  While there are towns and cities that still hold Memorial Day parades, many have not held a parade in decades.  Some people think the day is for honoring any and all dead, and not just those fallen in service to our country.”

“There are a few notable exceptions. Since the late 50’s on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3d U.S.  Infantry place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery.  They then patrol 24 hours a day during the weekend to ensure that each flag remains standing.”

On a personal note, being the granddaughter, daughter and niece of WWI and WWII veterans, I remember our fallen, they are all heroes to me and lost their lives so that I may live in this great country, the United States of America, be free to write these words and share tears at the loss of their lives.  But I’ve often wondered why we don’t have a national holiday honoring a woman.  I learned writing this post, we in fact do.  A wonderful woman, Moina Michael, conceived of wearing poppies on Memorial Day to honor our fallen soldiers. What better tribute could there be.

THANK YOU.

Here is a couple of the many touching images all over #RedNationRising on Twitter and Facebook recognizing the fallen (it’s so nice to see Social Warriors spreading the word).

Memorial Day Soldiers

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And lastly, we remember our heroes today and leave you with the great words of President Ronald Reagan.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=MsUhTeKYEPY

For those who have fallen, we are a RED NATION RISING and taking America back.

UPDATE 6:21 pm EST: The picture below was taken this morning at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery in St. Louis and posted on Twitter by @DanStlMo. We just had to include it!  WOW!

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21 thoughts on “Tribute to Our Fallen Heroes

    1. Thank you Linda. Researching and writing this blog was an amazing journey and I thank RedNationRising for posting this tribute to our fallen.

  1. Thank you – I was especially interested in reading about the Poppies.
    Here in the UK, our Memorial Day is Remembrance Day, and falls on November 11th, where we observe a two-minute silence.
    The sunday closest to that date is Remembrance Sunday, where poppy wreaths are laid at the tomb of the unknown soldier by The Queen, the highest serving members of the three services, and by representatives of all organisations who helped during the war effort.

    The poppy is sold by the British Legion, a charity which looks after the widows and children of the fallen. Not to wear a poppy in one’s lapel on those days is very unpatriotic.

    Also, the British Legion sells small wooden crosses, on which one can write the name of a falled or dead service man or woman. These crosses are stuck in the grass surrounding our war memorials, which are in every town and small village. Together with the laying of poppo wreaths at these memorials, those Remembrance Services are very poignant.

    The papers, local and national, have pages of memorial advertisements from all the services, the regiments,the associations.

    We do not forget …

    1. *LIKE!*

      Thanks, mum! It’s great to get the Brit perspective. We American Conservatives are rising against the Blue Democrats and Liberals destroying America — and jeopardizing the Free World — in complete disrespect to all who paid the ultimate sacrifice fighting for our cherished traditions and ideals.

      1. Thanks!
        Here, we conservatives have had enough of the three establishment parties, and are flocking to UKIP. Even better, this is a groundswell of people from both right and left – what you’d call Blue Dog dems – and UKIP is now at 22% of the votes in the opinion polls.
        Meanwhile, the MSM and the established party leaders and their cronies are trying to smear us. It ain’t working, it makes even more people join UKIP.
        Things are looking up!

    2. Thank you mum! Might I invite you to write guest blogs for your Remembrance Day (which ties with our Veteran’s Day) and Remembrance Sunday that we could post here at RedNationRising in November? It is history that all Americans should be aware of and learn from. We should write sister blogs!

      1. Thanks, that’s a great idea. Yes, sharing such histories would be excellent, because there’s so much which binds our nations – things which the left on both sides wish we’d all forget, and which theytry to sweep under the carpet.

      2. A Remembrance Day post would be great! Even better… how about a post on the conservative movement in the UK flocking to UKIP? UKIP sounds like our Tea Party — a developing third party alternative to the establishment. Red Nation Rising is really a grassroots movement appealing to centrists, conservatives and libertarians to the right side of the political spectrum. The current regime of “Blue” Democrats are Progressive Socialists. Many Republicans are “RINOs” (Republicans in Name Only) and actually vote lock and step with the Blue Dem Socialists. The Electoral Map of USA is divided in two colors… red and blue. Red Nation Rising might be the fastest most widespread growing grassroots political movement in US history. In only 6 months, the movement is viral on Twitter, Facebook and even this blog! Conservatives are rallying. We are rising, internationally. Messages of support fly in — digitally — from the UK and Australia. Even S. Africa! To get your UK perspective would be a great read!

      3. Here in Canada, there are political parties forming to oppose the liberal policies that are draining our country of incentive and initiative. Visit http://www.wildrose.ca to find out about Alberta’s true conservative party. At present, the Progressive Conservative Party governs the province and are doing a bad job of it. We were debt free in 2008; now we owe 1.6 billion dollars. Scandle after scandle makes the news, yet Albertans are still wary of the only party that will bring the province back into the black.

        As for Remembrance Day, it’s becoming more and more like an anti-war day. Liberals have no idea of why it’s important to defend liberty. Any coward can have peace but it takes brave people to win freedom.

  2. Though I’m a Canadian, I realize the value of freedom. People need incentive, not regulations. The statists want to enslave the public whereas we conservatives wish to liberate citizens from bureaucratic tyranny. The facts of socialism’s failure are legion. The facts of capitalism’s triumphs are also legion. Any thinking person knows which is better for any country. The facts are on our side. Lets keep on fighting with clear and factual arguments. All the statists have is emotions and lies. Truth always wins out in the end. We owe it to the warriors against tyrannical governments to repel tyranny wherever it rears its ugly head and heads its ugly rear.

    1. Many thanks for the terrific comment! There is a Red Nation Rising in Canada, too! Please see my Reply immediately above to the poster “colliemum” about Conservatives rising internationally.

      1. Seems I can’t reply to your reply to my post – so I’m doing it here.
        Yes’ I’d be happy to write about UKIP – which is actually celebrating it’s 20th birthday this year. From a single-issue party UKIP has now become the only alternative to the three establishment parties, and after the success in the local election at the start of this month it is rising and rising in the polls.
        Many local politicians of both Labour and conservative are leaving their parties and crossing over, so UKIP is represented in many local councils now.
        For the EU elections next year, UKIP aims to become the party with the most seats, and polls indicate that this may well happen.

        On the darker side, the establishment politicians and journalists are now really taking UKIP seriously, and have started smear campaigns with the aim to make UKIP look like raving extremists. Well, so far these and other smears have only driven more people to actually join.

        I think getting an international community together is excellent – although be aware that in Europe at least, ‘red’ is associated with communism …. (Yep, I had to ‘learn’ the difference as well!)

      2. I’m glad to hear about UKIP and other conservative parties around the world. I know that several Canadian provinces have small-C conservative parties that have members of other parties joining them. How wonderful that people are realizing what a failure socialism is.

      3. I’m so glad to know that conservatives around the world are rising up to oppose the tyranny of socialism. We must become students of history and be able to rebut the false assertions of the liberals. History has repeatedly proven how socialism has failed and how capitalism has succeeded in elevating nations.

  3. To colliemum, cannot wait to read your UKIP blog post! You are a gifted writer mum!

    To bruce, might you also be interested in writing a blog post on your conservative movement?

    1. I sure would be interested in writing about the Wildrose Party of Alberta. I’ve been a member since 2009 and I’m now active as VP of Communications for my local constituency association. Please tell me how to submit my blog post to you so you can put it on your blog. Maybe others would also be interested in blogging here about their conservative movements.

  4. “In 1915, inspired by the poem ‘In Flanders Fields’, Moina Michael replied with her own poem”.
    – The Canadian poem was not published until December 1915, in PUNCH in London England.
    Miss Michael could hardly have Replied as her country was even at war with Germany yet.
    What her vision of being called to remember US war dead was in fact a painting by Philip Lyford of the US used in patriotic marketing ads by Bauer and Black company, surgical supplier – this one printed in the Ladies’ Home Journal for November 1918. Her book tells of feeling the doughboys in the painting, rising from flames to heaven singing against and suitably bandaged.
    Her poem uses the Lilliard final verse, and misinterpreted what the Spring 1915 battlefield
    appeal to Canadian to send reinforcements, certainly not to decorate themselves with flowers!
    Canadian WW1 veterans recognized the French woman who supplied us with replica poppies for Armistice Day 1921 – the event to support her orphanage work commemorated on a Legion plaque installed at the Prince Arthur Hotel in Thunder Bay, naming Mme Guerin. Michael told Guerin not to offer replicas to the United States, even with VFW support, as she thought Americans should only give money that would benefit American veterans.:

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