Our View: Honoring those who gave all
Unless the reference is to Emperor Napoleon's famous defeat, and not the town in New York named by President Lyndon Johnson as the official birthplace of Memorial Day, not many of us do.
But that's OK, because while as many as two dozen cities and towns lay claim as the founding site of Memorial Day, where the holiday originated isn't what's important. What matters is that after World War I, Memorial Day was testament to unity, not division. After that war, the holiday was officially changed from honoring only those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring all Americans who died fighting in all wars — allowing the South to join ranks in proclaiming the honor with the rest of the nation.
On Memorial Day, no writing is ever profound enough, no speech ever so resounding as to completely pay tribute to those Americans who made the ultimate sacrifice for our nation.
But we must, and do continue to try to give proper homage to those who died in our wars. Locally, there are at least three opportunities Monday to join in a service remembering our war dead: 7:30 a.m. in the B.B. Dougherty Administration Building at Appalachian State University; 10:40 a.m. at Boone Mall; 11 a.m. at Blowing Rock Memorial Park; and, 1 p.m. at the VFW at 144 VFW Drive, Boone.
America's annual day of remembrance is one for which the price was dear. Joining in one of our local tributes to our fallen heroes, and their families, is a small effort we can make in saying thank you for preserving our nation.