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Friday, May 29, 2020

Opinions > Editorial

Honoring them everyday

May 21, 2020

Just like everything else in the last few months relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, Memorial Day will also be observed differently.
What we know as Memorial Day today, began as Decoration Day in the years following the Civil War. It wasn't until 1971 that Memorial Day became a federal holiday.
This year, there will be no large crowds visiting cemeteries or memorials nor will there be hundreds lining the streets for a parade.
But there are some ways to maintain social distancing protocols and participate in Memorial Day events this Monday.
Roscoe will have a Mobile Memorial Day Procession and the county is holding their ceremony virtually on Facebook Live (see front page for details).

While most of us will most certainly miss the opportunity to attend the numerous ceremonies honoring and mourning the lives of military personnel that made the ultimate sacrifice, the truth is there is much we can still do to show them how much we appreciate what they've done for us.
For example, each day we can thank a veteran, active military personnel or the family members who lost their sister, brother, mother, father, son, daughter, cousin, etc.
It only takes a few seconds but means so much.
We can also be advocates for legislation that helps provide much needed services and resources to our veterans.
For all they have given up to fight for us, the least we can do is fight for them.
While Memorial Day was started to honor military personnel, the weekend has taken on other meanings. For some it is the official start of summer and a time to dust off the grill and hold a barbecue.
These precious moments with families and friends are important, but shouldn't overshadow what the day was designated for.
On the topic of family gatherings and barbecues, with active cases of the coronavirus in the county steadily dropping and plans for reopening in the works, we are beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
This does not, however, mean we can immediately return to life as usual. That includes this weekend.
Washing hands constantly, not holding large gatherings and wearing masks in places where social distancing is impossible is still very important.
If each and every one of us does not do our part, it will have a detrimental effect on two fronts. The first is that it puts people's health at risk. The second is that all the work we did to ensure we could reopen the economy will be in vain and we'll risk having to do this all over again.
So please, be smart and be safe!

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