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Memorial Day

May 25th, 2020 · No Comments · City Library, Main Branch, West Branch

 Memorial Day has a split personality. It is normally the unofficial day to start the fun of summer. However, it also has a very serious side.  Today, I am going to talk about the serious side.

 Memorial Day used to be known as Decoration Day.  Decoration Day evolved from various events during and after the American Civil War for honoring the service members who lost their lives in this war.  People would place flowers on the gravesites of the service members (Union and Confederate), to honor and remember their sacrifice.

The emphasis is to remember each individual service member, who served to protect our nation; and in the process lost their life, the ultimate sacrifice.

 Not all who passed away have been able to come back home, to be buried in a special place.  Some will not be able to return, because of the nature and location their death; or did come back as an unidentified causality and buried as an unknown.  Service members from World War II, Korea, and Vietnam are still being found today in many remote sites and are presently being identified.

 The Defense POW/Mia Accounting Agency is the government agency whose duty is to find the fallen and identify them.  The agency’s website is  On this website, there are listings of the people who have not been recovered to date and announcements on the recent identifications of these lost heroes with their basic stories.  Presently, most of the newer identifications are services members found in lost graves from the 1943 Tarawa Atoll battle and exhumed from gravesites marked as unknown, Korean War’s Chosin Reservoir Campaign and the unknown casualties of the USS Oklahoma sinking at Pearl Harbor.

 Take a pause this weekend to thank and remember those individuals who gave the ultimate sacrifice over the past decades, so that we can enjoy the American way today. 

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