Showing posts with label MEMORIAL DAY. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MEMORIAL DAY. Show all posts

Monday, May 2, 2011


Show your thanks to WWII veterans by watching this 2-minute video.

Click here

This story is incredible. Send this touching two-minute video about World War II veterans to FIVE friends and family to remind them that every day alive in this great, free country is truly a bonus. Let’s get 50,000 views for the video by Memorial Day (May 30th) to show these living heroes, one last time, just how grateful we are for their unbelievable sacrifice. The video is a trailer to a documentary that will come out in November. The more we can show interest in the trailer (i.e. views), the more Americans will get to see the film. Time is running out: 1,000 WWII vets die every day. We are free today because of these men and women. The least we can do is watch a web video and send it to five people. Let’s get this mission done!

Thursday, May 27, 2010


Republican Herald (PA)

What Memorial Day means
Published: May 27, 2010

JOHN E. USALIS/Staff Photo From left, North Schuylkill Elementary School sixth-graders Samantha Brown, Alexus Washington and Kimber Eye place a flag at the Christ Church Cemetery gravesite of Michael Puglia, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran of World War II, during Wednesday's flag distribution.

FOUNTAIN SPRINGS - The meaning of Memorial Day, the American flag, the Pledge of Allegiance and other patriotic traditions were the focus of a special program Wednesday for the students in the North Schuylkill School District.

For some students in the district's elementary school, the lessons learned lead to a hands-on experience as they placed American flags at the graves of U.S. veterans in local cemeteries.
Members of veterans posts in Ashland and Girardville visited the elementary school in the morning and the high school in the afternoon to speak to the students in what has become an annual program.

During the elementary school program, the students sat on the gymnasium floor and heard explanations about the traditions, rituals and items connected to Memorial Day and other patriotic holidays. The students were welcomed by Elementary Principal Neall Jones, who explained the purpose of the program.

"Today, we have a special program in honoring the veterans who fought for our country, especially those who died or were injured, to keep everybody safe and keep everybody free," Jones said.
Jones then handed the microphone to Thomas C. Dando, who served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War.

"This day is very important to all these men you see behind me," Dando said. "They came from whatever else they had to do because they wanted to talk to you and make you are aware of the importance of Memorial Day, which is the day set aside to honor all those who have made the supreme sacrifice for their country."

Dando asked each veteran to stand and introduce himself, and then each veteran spoke individually about topics such as the flag as an emblem, respecting the flag, the meaning of the poppy, a reading of "In Flanders Field," the meaning of the 21-gun salute and the playing of taps, and the story behind the POW/MIA flag.

Participating in the program were Ashland VFW Post 7654 and American Legion Post 434 Commander Harry Hause and Girardville American Legion Post 309 Commander William Gower.

There was also a display of emblems used to hold American flags at the graves of veterans. World War II veteran Daniel Trautman, who participated in the Normandy invasion, explained the different emblems.

Dando thanked the elementary students who would place the flags on the graves after the program, stating that they would be a great help in making sure that each veteran's grave would have a U.S. flag flying at it. He said what would take many hours for the veterans to place flags would take a very short time for the many students to do.

As the program ended, the students were each given a poppy before boarding buses to be driven to the cemeteries in the Ashland area. The students were given flags and instructed on how and where to place them.

Friday, February 12, 2010


A better understanding of Memorial Day

DoD photo

On Nov. 19, 2009, Wal-Mart's senior manager of executive communications sent American Legion Post 378 in Gulf Breeze, Fla., a letter that caused applause from both Post 378 Legionnaires and veterans nationwide. Starting in 2010, Wal-Mart stores in the United States will discontinue the sale of fireworks until after Memorial Day.

"If Wal-Mart management wondered what the thunder was they heard last November, it was 25 million veterans in America applauding their decision to discontinue the sale of fireworks on Memorial Day," said Mike Esmond, Americanism chairman of Post 378. "Somehow, the true meaning of Memorial Day has gotten lost in all the backyard barbeques, beach parties and sales. It's a day to honor veterans' memories, not celebrate their deaths."

Esmond and his fellow Post members were not aware that Wal-Mart sold fireworks on Memorial Day until May of last year. This awareness motivated the Legionnaires to resume their letter-writing campaign with Wal-Mart, a campaign that started back in 2002 with local supermarket Winn-Dixie.

While shopping in Winn-Dixie prior to Memorial Day in 2002, Esmond saw a shocking display that brought tears to his eyes - signs that read "Celebrate!" were posted next to rows of fireworks for sale. The shock of fireworks being sold on a day devoted for honor and remembrance of fallen soldiers inspired Esmond and his fellow Legionnaires to write letters in order to get their voices heard. They wanted to voice their idea on how to change the way Americans view and respect the significant holiday.

Therefore, the CEO of Winn-Dixie received numerous letters urging him to stop selling fireworks on Memorial Day. The letters came pouring in from Post 378 members, along with other local post commanders and members from various veteran organizations - thanks to Esmond attending their meetings and gaining their support.

As a result of the Legionnaires' persistence, the CEO responded in February of 2003 with a letter to Post 378 that stated Winn-Dixie would discontinue selling fireworks on Memorial Day for that year only. The Legionnaires' voices were heard, but only for a brief time. "We had won the battle then, but we knew not the war," Esmond said. But 2009 marked a new year for winning the war with a new target - Wal-Mart.

Starting last May, Legionnaires sent Wal-Mart's upper management letters urging them to discontinue selling fireworks on a day American's should be "honoring the men and women who have made the ultimate sacrifice to protect this great nation and not celebrating their death," Esmond said. In a span of seven months, more than 50 letters were sent, and for that reason, Wal-Mart relented, announcing in November that fireworks will no longer be sold in U.S. stores until after Memorial Day.

Moreover, the news of Wal-Mart's immeasurable decision spread quickly, as Esmond read the letter to those involved in the campaign. Everyone applauded with excitement, including Post 378 Commander Bud Freeman, who "felt a surge of patriotism like you feel during the national anthem." The letter also had a significant impact on Esmond.
"When I read it, I jumped up out of my chair with excitement, and then I sat down and cried," Esmond said. "I cried because I knew I was holding in my hands a letter that would make a difference in changing the mindset of a lot of Americans in the way they think about Memorial Day."

And because of Wal-Mart's decision, letters currently addressed to its management have a different tone to them.
"For six months I have gone around to posts asking them to write letters to condemn Wal-Mart for selling fireworks," Esmond said. "Now I'm going back around asking them to write letters complimenting Wal-Mart for discontinuing the sale of fireworks."

Esmond even wrote to President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden, former President George W. Bush and Sen. John McCain regarding Wal-Mart's way of showing appreciation for the service and sacrifice of U.S. military personnel and their families.

"The whole purpose of the letter-writing campaign is to change the attitude of American's viewpoint of Memorial Day," Esmond said. "Because if we don't teach our younger generation the proper respect for Memorial Day, then who will?"

In the meantime, the letter writing campaign presses on with Winn-Dixie, as Post 378 members continue to wait for a response that coincides with the one from Wal-Mart.

If you too would like to thank Wal-Mart, please address a letter to:

Robert Morlino
Sr. Manager, Executive Communications
Wal-Mart, Inc.
702 SW 8th Street
Bentonville, AR 72716